DETROIT, April 28, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Imagine experiencing trauma, abuse or loss. Now imagine being a child in those circumstances, alone in the world, without a home or family to turn to.
There is no substitute for a loving and caring home, especially in times of need, but this is the reality for thousands of children in crisis across metro Detroit. Fortunately, making the ultimate difference in the lives of these youth, are foster parents. They are a special breed of compassionate and concerned individuals who provide urgent and sustaining shelter for children at risk.
To draw attention to issues surrounding foster care in metro Detroit, as well as to celebrate the families who take on this awesome responsibility, The Children's Center (TCC) will observe national Foster Care Awareness Month in May.
TCC will kick off the campaign on Tuesday, April 29 at 10 a.m. on the corner of Woodward Avenue and West Alexandrine Street (on block from TCC's Midtown campus headquarters, in front of Great Lakes Coffee) with hundreds of volunteers who will drape Midtown in blue ribbons, the official symbol of Foster Care Awareness Month. Lampposts, storefronts, trees and volunteers will proudly display blue trimming up and down Woodward, stretching from Ferry Street through Grand Circus Park. The general public is also encouraged to join in this community-wide demonstration of support for foster care. Information about how to participate can be found on The Children's Center website, www.thechildrenscenter.com, under Upcoming Events.
"Foster parents literally change a child's life," says Debora Matthews, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Children's Center. "Unfortunately, there are more children in need of foster care than there are available homes. At The Children's Center, we are working to change that through many strategies, but including making the licensing process easier to understand and more user-friendly. We have a terrific staff of experts who can help interested parties learn more about becoming foster care givers."
In Michigan, more than 14,000 children are placed in foster care annually. The Children's Center provides foster care services for approximately 200 children on any given day. The only agency in Michigan whose child welfare staff is fully trained in Traumatic Stress, TCC offers an array of programs to help stabilize families and return children to their homes. They also provide Adoption and Respite Care services, as well as Independent Living for teens who have aged out of the foster care system. TCC is unique in offering a one-stop-shopping approach to mental, physical, behavioral and developmental services at a single location on their Midtown campus.
Founded almost 85 years ago, TCC provides an integrated care approach to treating the behavioral health, physical health and educational needs of each individual child. Services include psychiatric/psychological counseling, developmental disabilities programs, early childhood education and afterschool programs, foster care and adoption services, infant mental health, family counseling, and crisis care services.
About The Children's Center Serving over 7,500 children and families annually, The Children's Center is one of most comprehensive frontline agencies in the State of Michigan.
Together with community partners, TCC offers more than 20 interrelated programs that help children and families in Greater Detroit overcome mental, physical and behavioral health, abuse, neglect and poverty challenges—and heal, grow and thrive.