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Who are Foster Children & Teens?

Newborns, Toddlers, and School Children

Your foster child will be like any young person: quiet, active, playful, funny, serious, anxious, shy or self-assured.  Some foster kids have brothers and sisters, some go to school, some stay at home, some speak English, some speak Spanish, some have disabilities.

But every foster child will have faced difficult times. A parent may have abandoned the home, or be spending time in jail. Your child may be shaken by neglect or emotional abuse. Sometimes the abuse is physical or sexual. These experiences are painful and confusing for any young person to deal with.

Still, young people are resilient in surprising ways. While no foster child is exactly the same, each one is capable of learning, growing and thriving when there is someone who will listen and give them consistent, genuine care.

Teenagers and Young Adults

Foster teens are like any other teens: unsure, hopeful about their future, trying to learn who they are. Because of their life experiences, foster teens may be pretty independent and can make some of their own decisions. Part of learning is making mistakes, so your teen will need an adult to connect with and feel safe.

Young adults leaving foster care are embarking on an independent life. They are working, going to school and learning life skills that will help them be strong adults. They need guidance and kindness and a safe place and people who can move them toward their goals.

Stability and Healing

No matter their age, your foster child will have a huge adjustment being away from the only family he or she knows.  But foster care is an important step in protecting each child and helping the child’s family stabilize their home. You may have to adjust you parenting style to meet your child’s needs. But your steady support can help your foster child through these difficult times. As you show your child safety and care, you can be a vital force of healing in his or her life.

If you think you can provide a safe, healing home for local foster children, teens or young adults, contact one of the Sonoma County foster or adoption agencies.

Local Foster and Adoption Agencies

Human Services Department

TLC Child & Family Services

Alternative Family Services

Lillieput Families

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