CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WOWK) – West Virginia is experiencing a major shortage of foster families. It’s becoming such a burden; companies have started offering incentives to get more families on board.
More than 7,000 children are in foster care throughout the state. NECCO is just one foster care company that gets referrals every day, but can’t place kids in loving and supportive homes.
“We just need families who, you know, step up and take these kids in and give them that support they deserve and the love that they deserve and help them feel safe,” Miranda Carson, Foster Parent Recruiter for NECCO said.
Carson said it gets referrals for children of all ages, but the most common are for sibling groups of three or more and teenagers.
“I think there’s just a lot of fears, so what I try to do is just re-educate people, you know, these kids are in foster care for no fault of their own. They were put in these situations. They didn’t make that decision. Someone else did,” Carson said.
West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources is giving extra money for kinship caregivers. DHHR will provide $300 within the 10 to 14 days of placement.
We asked people on Facebook why people think the state is experiencing a shortage of foster families, one person said “They turn good people away for their own “personal” reasons without looking at all options…. go thru a year of jumping thru hoops to get approved being told “all is great”, then turned away at the end.”
Another one said, “Because they want to treat you like criminals,” and “The process of ridiculous.”
“We just really need families who can accept them for who they are and what they’ve been through and that are willing to deal with that trauma.”
For more information on becoming a foster parent, click here.