As the chairperson of the board of directors for Cultivating Families, a foster parent and a person of faith, I am proud to be representing our organization in fundraising in the new year!
If you're not already aware, Cultivating Families equips faith communities of all types and creeds to support foster and adoptive families, so that no child will be left to navigate life alone. Cultivating Families is not a placement agency, which allows us to remain neutral, to seek the good of all, and to avoid conflicts of interest.
Instead, we provide programs to those considering foster care and/or adoption to help them determine whether it is the right choice for them. We help churches and synagogues and mosques build beds and first night kits that may allow a relative to take a kinship placement they otherwise could not meet the state's minimum standards for, or to help ease the process for anyone else becoming part of the fostering community--children and adults. We help faith communities create support groups, an atmosphere of acceptance and welcome for those whose life experiences are different, and the means to help make our world more loving and just as they are already called to do.
Being a foster or adoptive parent isn't for everyone, but everyone can do something to love and support children in need and the families who raise them. What better group is there to do that than a faith community? Anyone who practices a faith and believes in something greater than him- or herself knows that we are called to use our gifts to help others; we are best when we gather together to do so in the name of the one we worship.
For more information, I invite you to look us up at www.cultivatingfamilies.org, to pray for us and for children and families in fostering or adoptive situations, and to consider donating some money. Because our goal is to equip others, your donations go farther than you might think.
In gardening, the term, companion planting, means sowing seeds in such a way that plants help each other grow. Our board of directors is digging in, planting seeds of hope for children from foster care, and expecting a plentiful harvest.
Cultivating Families' mission is to equip communities of faith to care for foster and adopted children. Our vision is "a future where all communities of faith care for foster and adopted children." Our board of directors believes that "when all faith communities care for foster and adopted children, NO CHILD WILL BE LEFT TO NAVIGATE LIFE ALONE."
It's a dire need. Children from foster care, not adopted by the age of eighteen, "emancipate," and are at risk to navigate the world on their own without lifelong families and relationships. Countless studies show that this often leads to increased school dropout rates, substance abuse, unemployment, higher percentages of incarceration, and many other struggles. Serving all faiths, Cultivating Families is a neutral stakeholder that brings everyone to the table including The Department of Family and Protective Services, Faith leaders, child placement agencies, and qualified therapists.
WHEN YOU MAKE A DONATION TO CULTIVATING FAMILIES:
- You ensure that we can continue to equip communities of faith to care for local foster and adopted children.
- It makes a difference when we engage new congregations, develop new programs and courses that help foster and adoptive parents, recruit and train new course and event leaders, offer the community-wide prayer initiative for all children in foster care, and more!
WHEN YOU VOLUNTEER FOR CULTIVATING FAMILIES:
- You gain insight into the lives of foster and adopted children and their families.
- You actively participate in a way that helps children and families involved in the foster care system.
- You can track your hours and gain references for your resume or education
These are just a few of the ways in which you and your company or organization will benefit from a partnership with Cultivating Families. A relationship with us is more than just a business deal; it’s a promise of a better tomorrow for children from foster care.