BRYAN, TX — The month of May is a time to reflect on foster parents, volunteers, child welfare professionals who support children in the foster care system looking for their forever homes.
America's heart where families start has been established in the Brazos Valley for 6 years. Their mission is to provide quality care for children and adequate training for foster and adoptive parents.
Claire Hohertz is the foster home developer for America's heart. She was inspired to join the organization because of her passion to ensure kids knew they were not alone. She also acknowledged that mental health has a huge role to play in the lives of these young individuals. Mental Health Awareness is also observed in the month of May.
”I was originally very passionate about mental health and I also have a big heart for kids and I think that someone has to stand up and speak for these kids and somebody has to have a voice for them and every kid deserves a second chance,” said Claire Hohertz, Americas Heart foster home developer.
Her team shared there has always been an issue with finding teens in foster homes but due to the pandemic, the numbers have risen like never before. The demand so high CPS is taking unusual measures allowing them to sleep in their offices.
“Right now, I'm working on specifically recruiting homes that are able to provide placement for teens,” Hohertz shared.
”Teens specifically are having a hard time right now in Texas to finding homes people are afraid that with their older age they're going to come with more issues and that’s a myth,” said Amelia Kurk, Americas Heart foster care case manager.
Hohertz works alongside families providing them with all the training and support they need every step of the way in hopes to find kiddos their forever home.
“Here’s a kid that’s coming into a home and they haven't had that support and they're needing that support and all they're asking for is a safe place to land,” Hohertz expressed.
According to the numbers tracked by America's Heart in the Lone Star State, there are nearly 16,000 children in foster care of that number there are a little over 3,000 who are waiting for an adoptive family to call home.
According to the organization, in region seven which includes the Brazos Valley, there are approximately a little over 2,000 children in the foster care system.
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