Upbring is honored to work alongside compassionate foster families who open their homes and hearts to children. As much as we love partnering with new foster families to break the cycle of child abuse, we know that not everyone can foster. And that’s okay.
Here are 7 easy but life-changing ways you can support foster families in your community:
- Set up playdates. For safety reasons, children in foster care have restrictions on where they can go and with whom they can interact. Because of those restrictions, they don’t have access to many of the typical childhood experiences every kid deserves. If you have children, set up playdates with children in foster care. Invite them to birthday parties, cookouts and other family functions. Their foster parents will know how to comply with applicable restrictions, and you will give the children happy memories that last a lifetime.
- Prepare the home for the child’s arrival. Every foster family’s home has to pass multiple inspections to ensure it is safe for a child. If you’re handy with a hammer, saw, screwdriver or drill, you can rebuild fences, replace steps and make other repairs. If not, you can baby-proof the home, mow the yard or clear out closets for extra storage space.
- Assemble a care package. Children in foster care often arrive at their new homes with nothing more than the clothes on their back. You can help by assembling a care package with clothes, shoes, school supplies, hygiene products, books and other essentials. If the family is caring for a baby, include diapers, baby bottles, baby monitors and pacifiers.
- Provide meals. Preparing nutritious, kid-friendly meals that foster families can freeze and use throughout the week is an easy way to show them their neighbors stand with them. You can also provide gift cards to nearby restaurants or deliver groceries with healthy foods like fruits and vegetables.
- Help with routine tasks. Do you ever feel like 24 hours in a day aren’t enough to get everything done? Foster families feel the same. They also have to find time for parent training classes, children’s therapy appointments, home visits by case workers and Court Appointed Special Advocate meetings. You can ease their daily grind by shopping for groceries, washing clothes and doing other routine tasks.
- Get certified to care for the children. If you need to take a weekend trip, go to the grocery store without kids or spend an evening with your spouse, you can call a babysitter. That is not an option for foster parents, who must use certified respite care , babysitting and regular alternate care providers. By getting certified to provide care, you help reduce stress, decrease conflict and ease logistical challenges for the family. Certification is also a great way to explore whether you want to open your heart to becoming a foster parent someday.
- Offer your photography skills. The Heart Gallery features profiles of children who are in foster care and waiting to be adopted. Photographers volunteer their time and talent to create portraits that capture each child’s individuality, smile and spirit. You never know; your work could help a child connect with a loving family.
Support foster families through Upbring
If you want to show an Upbring foster family they are not alone in caring for their children, here are two ways you can help.
Make a donation. Your generosity empowers us to provide foster parent training, personal care items for children, family outings, holiday celebrations and other benefits for our foster families. To make a donation, visit our donation page and choose “Foster In Texas” from the “Designate your gift” drop-down menu.
Volunteer. If you don’t know a foster family, we can connect you with one! We offer a variety of opportunities to make an impact for a family by volunteering your time and talent. Visit our volunteer page and scroll down to “Foster In Texas” to learn more.