Parenting & Childcare Blog

3 Ways to Support Children in Foster Care Without Becoming a Foster Parent

With over 400,000 children in the foster care system across the United States — 17,000 of whom are in New York State — the need for support is critical. As 6,000 children enter the foster care system in New York annually, supporting these children and their families is increasingly important. However, becoming a foster parent is a significant commitment that all individuals may not be able make. Fortunately, there are other ways that you can support children in foster care without becoming a foster parent.

How to Support Kids in Care Without Being a Full-Time Foster Parent

1. Provide Respite Care

You can help give foster parents a break by providing respite care to their children in foster care. After completing the foster care certification process, you are eligible to provide respite care and supervise children in care during regularly scheduled intervals — from an hour or two to a long weekend or more. This allows you to be hands-on with the kiddos but in a way that doesn’t require the same level of commitment that full-time foster parenting requires. Click here to learn more and sign up for an upcoming information session.

2. Support Organizations Serving Children in Foster Care

While you may not have the capacity to serve as a foster parent or provide respite care, you can still support children in foster care by supporting the organizations that are meeting their needs. For example, Together for Youth is a statewide non-profit working to strengthen children and families so they can live safely, independently, and productively within their home communities, serving over 8,000 children annually through a trauma-informed model of care. To support Together for Youth in their mission to meet the needs of children in foster care, you can…

3. Become an Advocate & Educate Others

Spreading awareness of foster care is a great way to rally support behind the cause and help children in foster care receive the support and services they need to live safely and productively. Becoming an advocate is a low-cost, low-commitment opportunity to educate others and make an impact in your community. Some ways in which you can become an advocate for children in foster care include…

Share social media content from experts in the foster care and foster parenting fields on your personal pages and accounts.

Follow Together for Youth on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

Talk to Your Friends & Family

Probably one of the easiest ways that you can support children in foster care is by spreading the word to your friends and family! Many individuals are unaware of the extreme need and positive impact foster care can have on a child’s life. By spreading awareness with those closest to you, you can continue to expand the awareness of foster care’s importance within our communities.

Go Purple in May for Foster Care Awareness Month

Join Together for Youth in “going purple” throughout the month of May to help bring awareness to the critical need for foster families in New York State. You can be creative by wearing purple, baking purple treats, or even wearing a purple wig. Please share about why you’re going purple to help advocate for children in foster care.