We are following Jesus’ example by looking at our “crowd” of God’s children in foster care and having compassion on them. We are praying that the Lord will send more workers into His field.
36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 He said to his disciples, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. 38 So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.”
Fostering Faithfully Support Group: Volunteers can partner with either helping with childcare or providing snacks for the meetings. We facilitate a monthly support group meeting to connect and encourage seasoned foster families, new foster parents, and those licensing from all over the county at Foothills Community Church from 6 PM-8 PM on the third Sunday evening of each month. Data indicates for every 1,000 families who express interest in fostering children in South Carolina, only 300 of them make it through the long process to license. Support must start early!
The Foster Care Resource Center: Volunteers clean out, sort and organize the foster resource center regularly. We have volunteers who shop for families, take emergency placements and need help. We provide resources such as clothes, cribs, baby equipment, and toys through our Foster Care Resource Center. Any donation is tax deductible and we can provide you a receipt. Check out our WISH LIST!
Care Bags: Volunteers pack care bags from donations at the resource center for caseworkers to utilize when they head out with police to take custody of children. These bags allow caseworkers to arrive at foster homes with something to help families get through the first few days. In this care bag, we put a couple of outfits, socks, undies/diapers, blanket, toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, shampoo, hairbrush, diapers, band aids, a toy, and a children’s Bible storybook. When children enter foster care, our hope is to provide a dignified duffel bag, personalized with a child’s name when possible to show the child how valuable and precious he is! Get involved with collecting items for duffle bags or help pack the collected items to complete a care bag.
Childcare for Foster Parent Association Meetings: Volunteers serve by providing a fun and safe environment for children whose caretakers are completing required training. Groups are welcome to come serve! Foster parents require 28 hours of training every two years. The training is the second Tuesday of each month from 6:00 PM-8:00 PM.
Provide a meal before FPA trainings so that families can come directly from work and enjoy a meal together before training begins.
Respite Care Services: Volunteers can provide opportunities for foster parents to have a break for a night, an hour, or a weekend. A full background check is required.
Date Night Host for Foster Parents: Volunteers, groups, or churches are invited to host a date night or special event for our families. Fostering couples desperately need opportunities to be recharged and reconnect. Traumatized children often have high emotional needs, serious medical concerns, and many new stressors in the family schedule like sudden meltdowns, medical appointments, social worker and GAL visits, etc.
Meals Ministry: Volunteers can bring a meal to a foster family who has taken a new placement. This is especially a need for families who take newborns and sibling groups suddenly.
Sponsor Foster Child Birthday Parties: Every child deserves a special birthday celebration. Your donation helps us help foster parents host a memorable celebration of every child’s life!
Mentor a child: If you would like to mentor a child of any age or especially a child getting ready to age out and become independent, please contact us!
Care for Social Workers: Social workers have a tough job! They work long hours in extremely stressful circumstances. We hope to periodically treat them to breakfast or lunch at the Department of Social Services or surprise them with small gifts of encouragement as they serve foster children and are an integral part of each child’s care team.
Providing Back to School shoes to foster kids is a tangible way to say we care. Every child deserves to start a school year feeling confident in new shoes!.
Provide Mini-Grants to Foster Families as needed: Foster parents can apply for mini-grants for big and small things. We hope to provide scholarships for foster parents to attend the SCFPA Conference. This is a great opportunity to be inspired and encouraged, connect with other foster parents and resources, as well as earn training hours. The conference is in Greenville, SC, and is $75.00 per parent each April. We also fundraise for foster child needs like camp tuition, special events (prom/band/field trips, etc.), as well as foster parent needs during licensing like beds/cribs/mattresses/car seats, smoke detectors/ new windows, etc.
*Other opportunities exist based on skills volunteers bring: baking birthday cakes, adoption parties, photography sessions, etc. As fundraising provides, we hope to offer an annual retreat weekend for foster/adoptive mothers to rejuvenate and connect! Contact us if you’d like to fund a “Created to Care” weekend for our community’s super mamas!
Have an idea to care for families? We’d love to hear from you!
Providing wrap-around support encourages good, stable families to become foster families. Nationally, almost half of the foster families drop out every year because they are overwhelmed. Help us change that!
Everyone has a role to play! Not everyone can foster, but our desire is to find ways for community members to serve foster families and children in foster care.
We believe if every church rises up and supports one foster family, Oconee and Pickens County could be known as a safe haven state-wide for foster children in South Carolina.
Be a Prayer Warrior
Keep this Prayer Guide beside you and pray DAILY!
Invite a Speaker
We will provide a speaker for your event to bring awareness to the community about the foster care needs in our area. We are available for church services or events, missions’ conferences, business events, ladies gatherings, small group meetings, etc. Also, if you would like to speak, we can simply set up in the lobby for those interested in helping to get information and ask questions.
Become an Advocate
We are hoping to find a church advocate for foster care in every faith family in our community. We believe that the church is an integral part of solving the foster care crisis. As a volunteer leader, you’ll learn about how to bring awareness of the foster care crisis in our state, and we’ll show you concrete ways to develop a thriving, active ministry to “the least of these” in your church.
Foster care was created to be a stable place for children, but with a limited number of foster homes available in our community foster children not only lose their parents or former caregivers, they often lose their siblings as well, as sibling groups of three or more are sometimes split up in 2-3 different homes/group homes all over the state. One of our dreams to meet the desperate need for more foster families in our community is to build a supportive foster home neighborhood where foster families could be centrally located to each other as they parent children from hard places. Other states have found success with this model of providing a solid infrastructure of private homes with Christian, state-licensed foster families living in them as a long-term solution to offer stability to OUR children in crisis. As the Department of Social Services (DSS) looks to drastically reduce the use of group homes, this neighborhood would offer the highest level of care that God-designed, a real, true family, at a drastically reduced cost compared to a group home/institution. Next, it is difficult to recruit and sustain foster families that have one parent who can stay home full-time to meet the needs of medically fragile newborns, and other children with special medical and/or behavioral needs due to abuse and neglect. Caring for some children in foster care (not just babies) is a full-time job of medical appointments and other therapeutic needs. These “home missionaries” willing to take on this role need great support, which a community setting could offer. We can’t wait to see how God is going to bring this plan into reality. If you’d like to talk more about making this dream a reality, contact us!
Volunteer with Us
We need your help. Contact us if you’d like to be a part of our team supporting over 100 children in foster care in our county and beyond! Donate your time or finances to support foster children and families! Call (864) 539-2133 or email Fostering Faithfully at email@example.com.
Ready to Get Connected?