Reader Writes

Doin’ Somethin’

Recently Debbie was interviewing a little girl here at the Children’s Center. They talked about the physical abuse the girl had experienced in her home. After the little girl recounted all the painful details, and wiped her eyes, Debbie asked her, “Are you happy in your new foster home?” The girl’s eyes brightened and without hesitation she answered, “Oh, yes! My foster mom really cares and protects us. I can tell her anything and she takes me seriously. She doesn’t just listen, either – she does somethin’ about it!”

According to Bethany Valdez, DHR foster care supervisor, there are 110 Blount County children in foster care. But we only have 27 foster families in the county. We are in serious need of loving adults who will take on this critical role. Foster parents don’t have to be perfect, but they must pass a background check, go through training, and have a safe, clean home.

Maybe you cannot be a foster parent but you would like to help. Call DHR and learn how you can help transport foster children to appointments, supervise family visits, or help financially with other needs like clothing, extra activities, and Christmas gifts. Foster parents will tell you that the challenges are many, but the rewards are immeasurable.

Maybe you can’t fix all of the world’s problems – but you can make a positive difference in the life of a child… As I think about Valentine’s Day, with all the cards, presents, flowers and such, it occurs to me that maybe the best expression of love to a child is just what that little girl described to Debbie – somebody who cares and protects you, listens to you, and doesn’t just listen – she does somethin’ about it. If you are interested in learning more, contact Blount County DHR at 274-5200.

I hope that you will give prayerful thought to how you, too, can do somethin’ about it by helping a foster child here in our community.

Jim Ed Clayton
Blount County Children’s Center