By Chad Ingram
The Kawartha Haliburton Children’s Aid Society is asking residents of Haliburton County along with those of the City of Kawartha Lakes andPeterborough to consider becoming foster parents.
“Please step forward and show children in our community that you arethere and that you care for them” Jennifer Wilson the society’sexecutive director said in a release. “These are community children –and the community shares responsibility for helping them in their timeof crisis.”
As the release indicates children do best with minimal disruption to their lives so the goal is to keep them in their own communities where they can continue to attend their schools partake in their regularactivities and be close to friends and family.
“Without local foster parents many children and youth are placed infoster homes outside of their community – leaving them far away frompeople they love and the familiar supports and resources they rely on”Wilson said in the release. “This has even greater impact for childrenand elevates traumatic experiences for children during a very difficulttime in their life – when they most need a sense of normal close to the people they know and love.”
Foster parents look after children for a temporary period as theChildren’s Aid Society works with their families to re-establish a safehome environment.
“Kids need you” Wendy Gordon the society’s foster care supervisorsaid in the release. “Individuals from all communities and backgroundsare welcome and encouraged to apply. We would love to talk to you andanswer questions you may have about fostering.”
The society welcomes foster parents of all faiths genders and sexual orientation.
“There is a need for foster parents who support children’s religious cultural and racial backgrounds and support children and youth whoidentify as 2SLGBTQ+” the release reads.
“Children come into the care of Kawartha-Haliburton CAS for manyreasons and the needs of children in care vary” reads the agency’swebsite. “Children and youth may present with a range of emotionaland/or behavioural challenges; they are in care for varying lengths oftime and many will return to the care of the parent or caretaker. Thechallenge for the foster family is to provide the physical and emotional support to children while recognizing the difficulty of letting gowhen a permanent plan is implemented.”
According to the website in order to become foster parentsapplicants must be at least 21 years of age have stable physical andemotional health finances and family relationships complete avulnerable sector screening test with the police and be approvedthrough a thorough assessment process. Nearly 30 hours of pre-servicetraining is required before the completion of a home study as part ofthis process. Foster parents may rent or own their home and may work.It is the responsibility of working foster parents to arrange suitablesupervision for children while they are at work.
Anyone looking for more information about foster parenting can visit the Kawartha Haliburton Children’s Aid Society website at https://www.khcas.on.ca/our-