A crisis is happening in Oregon. It’s a crisis that you probably won’t hear on the news. A crisis you may not even know about. A crisis that’s affecting children in your local community — children who attend your kids’ schools and live around your block.
Children in Oregon’s foster care system — and in foster care systems around the U.S. — are in desperate need of permanent, loving families.
Holt’s headquarters are in Eugene, Oregon, and when we learned about the foster care crisis happening right here in our home state, we knew we had to step up our efforts to advocate for these children — just as we have advocated for children around the world for over 60 years. Whether in Ethiopia, India, China or Oregon, there is no greater tragedy than a child losing their family. Our mission is to find permanent, loving families for children who truly need them.
In Oregon alone, more than 1,700 foster children wait for an adoptive family every year. If current trends continue, fewer than 700 children in the Oregon state foster system will join permanent families in 2017. More than 1,000 will continue to wait.
Nationally, about 400,000 children are living in foster homes, and about 100,000 have been legally relinquished by their birth families and are waiting for adoptive families.
Globally, the number of children waiting for families is even more staggering. About 13 million children have lost both their parents.
But what can we do? What can you do?
Take Action for Children in Your Community!
At Holt, we often ask supporters like you to help find families for children waiting in countries overseas. But the need is just as critical in the U.S. And as you’ve already demonstrated by helping us successfully match children on our waiting child photolisting, your advocacy can make a tremendous difference!
Shine a light on the need for families to foster children in your community, or to adopt children living in foster care! A great way to spread the word about this growing crisis is by sharing our “Crisis in Oregon” video. Educate your friends, family, neighbors and members of your church about the needs of children in their own state, and how they can step up. Even if you don’t live in Oregon, this video is relevant to children living in foster care across the U.S.
You can also help children in foster care through temporary assistance —everything from respite care to donations of new children’s items like clothes, backpacks and toys.
And lastly, if you’re considering adoption, we urge you to consider the children in your own community as well as children all around the world who are waiting for their permanent, loving families. Over the past year, Holt has expanded our services for children waiting for foster and adoptive families in Oregon, and we now offer homestudy services, pre-adoptive family training and post-adoption support. Learn more here.
Once you known the names, faces and stories behind these statistics, it’s impossible not to act. Thank you for joining us in serving children around the world — in Asia, Africa, in the Caribbean and right here in your home state.
Visit holtinternational.org/fostercare to learn how you can help advocate for children in your community.