Foster families needed in the Ozarks

Published: May. 19, 2018 at 2:42 PM CDT
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A dinner was held in Monett praising foster families from around the area, for the difficult job that they do.

The barbecue was to show appreciation for foster families in Stone, Barry, and Lawrence counties, because there aren't enough licensed foster families for the amount of foster kids who need homes.

Angels for Children say a majority of children who are taken away from their parents are put in custody of a relative, who may or may not be able to afford to care of the child.

That is where Angels for Children comes in, providing those relatives and other foster families with clothing, food, and anything else they might need.

They say that there are around 400 kids in foster care in Barry, Stone, and Lawrence county, and only around 50 foster families.

"It takes a special person to take in a foster child and love them and support them and do everything that they can for them. A lot of these kids come in with behavior problems and trauma and behaviors that not everybody can handle." said Kara Coley, with Angels for Children.

"When you are in the 27 hour training period, some people say right there... I'm in this, I can do this. And others say... well maybe later." said Marla Cantwell, a foster parent.

Angels for Children say all of the food for the dinner was donated by local people. The books were donated by Sheena Greitens, wife of Missouri Governor Eric Greitens. The shoes were donated by Shoe Sensation.

There are almost 20 thousand children in the care of the Missouri Children's Division right now, with the average age of the children being 8 years old.