PHOENIX (May 17, 2017) – May isn’t just the final month before cool spring weather cedes to summer’s scorching heat. It’s also National Foster Care Month.
“Every child deserves safety, shelter, and above all to be loved and cared for,” said Arizona Governor Doug Ducey. “May is National Foster Care Month and I urge all citizens to come forward and do something positive that will help improve the lives of children in foster care.”
Following on Governor Ducey’s proclamation, the Department of Child Safety would like to remind Arizonans that everybody can play a role to enhance the lives of children in foster care.
Here are ten ways you can help a child in foster care; not only in May, but throughout the year:
- Donate a material good. Foster families are often in need of cribs, beds or clothes. You can donate these items to one of DCS’s partner agencies. For more information on how to donate, email the DCS Community Liaison at [email protected].
- Take advantage of the foster care tax credit. Put your tax dollars towards charitable organizations that provide services to Arizona’s most vulnerable children. Individual filers can qualify for up to a $500 tax credit while married couples qualify for up to a $1,000 tax credit.
- Mentor a child in foster care. Mentoring a child who lacks permanency can have a lifelong impact on a young person. If you would like more information on mentoring, email the DCS Community Liaison at [email protected].
- Volunteer to be a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA). CASA’s are appointed by a judge to advocate for abused and neglected children in court. You can learn about becoming a CASA here.
- Register your church with CarePortal. CarePortal connects local churches with families in crisis. For information on how to register with the CarePortal, email Jonathan Sanborn at [email protected].
- Host an event for foster families. If you own a business, consider holding an event for foster families to enjoy. If interested in hosting an event, email the DCS Community Liaison at [email protected].
- Launch a fundraiser for foster children. Fundraisers are a great way to get the community involved to help children in foster care with school supplies, scholarships, or toys for the holidays. If you would like to hold a fundraiser, email the DCS Community Liaison at [email protected].
- Donate to one of DCS’s partner foster care organizations. In addition to the tax credit, you can give directly to any foster care group. To learn how, email the DCS Community Liaison at [email protected].
- Consider becoming a respite care provider. If you’re not able to become a foster parent, but still want to help out, you can become a licensed respite care provider. Respite providers offer short-term childcare solutions for foster parents. For more information on respite care, visit dcs.az.gov.
- Become a foster parent. Children in foster care always need safe and loving homes. You can find out what steps you need to take to be a foster parent here.