We strive to create an extended family that surrounds and supports foster families, and we support teens and young adults as they age out of foster care and establish their independence.
We do this with the help of a community of volunteers and community partners, including faith communities, businesses and other nonprofits.
The foster care system was designed to be temporary, so by design its relationships are short term and limited in scope. Yet stable, enduring and enriching relationships are one of the most powerful ways children heal from trauma after experiencing abuse and neglect. They must learn to manage survival impulses in order to learn to trust others and to find worth and an identity, and this comes through consistently showing up for them.
These are things most people have in their lives but don’t consciously think about, and it helps explain why so many children in foster care fail to thrive.
What it looks like
Like a real family, we don’t presume to have it all figured out. After all, every family is a work in progress. Yet we strive to be flexible and nimble, supporting both foster parents and kids. We adapt to kids’ changing needs as they grow.
Our hope is that kids grow up with a sense of belonging and worth and with relationships that don’t end abruptly at age 18 when they age out. The different segments of our program share four things in common:
- They are volunteer driven.
- They are designed around what foster parents and kids tell us their needs are at their stage in life.
- They are consistent with the latest science in developmental psychology.
- They are rooted in the power of loving, enduring relationships and healing.
It’s restoring family and community for these kids. We ensure a stable network of people to love them, to be patient with them, to be vigilant about their well-being. Someone to lean on during challenges after leaving the nest. It’s the same intangible yet essential things that we try to create for our own kids. And it makes all the difference.
Fostering Hope was started in Colorado Springs, and to our knowledge, we are one of the only nonprofits doing this particular work in the country.
The program is organized into two primary segments:
Our Core Program, in which volunteer teams from local faith communities surround and support foster parents and the kids in their care.
Fostering Adulthood, in which we support children who are soon to “age out” of foster care at 18 or have already aged out or emancipated.