On today's show, Adrian and Ethan discuss foster care in the United States. We're also launching a new contest for our listeners out there!
Children are in foster care because they or their families are going through a crisis. Often these children — from babies to teens — have been removed from their parents because they are unsafe, abused or neglected or their parents are unable to care for them.
On any given day, nearly 438,000 U.S. children are in foster care. More than 56,000 children in child welfare systems are living in group homes or institution placement. Advocates agree that children have more success when placed in family settings from the start.
Despite child welfare’s efforts to prevent the removal of children from their parents, the number of children in foster care has been increasing. Currently, we are at an all-time high as the demand for foster parents is far higher than the supply, and factors like parental opioid addiction are forcing more children to be removed from their homes.
According to the National Foster Youth Institute, more than 23,000 kids age out of U.S. foster care each year. Without the support that comes from an adoptive family, these kids face really tough odds. Many will end up with criminal records and chemical dependencies. Many girls will face pregnancies at a young age. Few will graduate college.