10 Ways to Celebrate National Foster Care Month in West Virginia

May is National Foster Care Month! We are so grateful for the families who provide safe and loving homes for kids in foster care, the workers who do all they can to positively improve the lives of kids in care and of course, we care very much for all of the children in the foster care system; each one going through their own situation and in need of adults they can depend on. 
1.    Spread the word - Blog, tweet, share FrameWorks’ post on Facebook! Tell people about National Foster Care Month and the increased need for more foster families in our communities. There are more than 6,000 children in foster care in WV and there is a huge need for more foster/adoptive families. 
2.    Join us for the 5.29k run/walk – If you live near Charleston, join us on May 19th for a fun and family friendly run/walk to benefit children recently adopted from foster care. Learn all of the details here: 5.29k Run/Walk
3.    Donate to the Carry-On Campaign! Garbage bags are not an acceptable form of luggage for youth in foster care, donate new luggage and hygiene items! We can connect you with a donation drop-site in or near your community. 
4.    Send a sweet treat! There are a lot of great social workers who do everything they can to empower the lives of kids in foster care. Send them a cupcake or some cookies to say thank you. Don't know a social worker? We can help you out, email us: fosteradopt(at)missionwv.org
5.    Write a letter to your local newspaper or  an elected representative. Let them know about the challenges facing kids in care, the need for foster families in WV and encourage them to be supportive of foster parents. 
6.    Offer discounts – do you own a business? Offer a discount to families who provide foster care. You could do this during the month of May or all year! Let us know and we will share the information with families!
7.    Organize a fundraiser – do you sell Scenty, 31 Bags, Pampered Chef or other items? Donate a percentage of your sales during the month of May to a nonprofit that works with kids in foster care. 
8.    Recruit foster parents  - ask friends, church members, coworkers and people in your community to become foster parents. Team up with Mission WV to hold an Information Open House in your community. 
9.    Get your kids involved! Consider having your children volunteer with organizations that provide for the needs of kids in foster care.  They can collect new toys and hygiene items for kids in the system.
10.    Get involved with a local agency! Contact a local foster care agency and ask them how you can help.  They are often in need of community members to get involved, don’t know who to call, ask us and we will get you connected to an agency! 

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Carrie Dawson