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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 20, 2008

CONTACT
Jeanne Atkinson, Communications and Legislative Services (402) 471-8287

 

Health and Human Services Hosts Public Forum on Foster Care

The Truth About Foster Care: Hear Their Stories

Lincoln – Youth on the Nebraska Foster Youth Council will be sharing firsthand stories about how foster care impacted their lives at a public forum. Foster parents will also be on hand to tell their experiences about foster children living in their homes.

The forum will take place from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on October 23 at the Kearney YMCA, 4500 6th Avenue, and is sponsored by the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

"We want people to hear the complete picture and share some of the many good stories about the positive difference foster parents make every day," said Todd Landry, director of the DHHS Division of Children and Family Services. "We’re hoping that hearing these stories will encourage people at the forum to find out more about becoming a foster parent."

"We are looking for good people to open their hearts and homes to children in need," said Yolanda Nuncio, administrator of the Central Service Area in DHHS.

Forum participants will be able to ask questions and visit with the youth, foster parents and staff. Representatives from DHHS, the Nebraska Foster and Adoptive Parents Association and other agencies will be on hand to give information about becoming a foster parent.

"We really appreciate all of the wonderful foster parents in our area, and always need more foster parents. We have over 560 central Nebraska children in some type of out-of-home placement and 209 foster homes in the Central Service Area," Nuncio said. "When we have qualified foster parents, it’s easier to keep children in their own neighborhoods and schools and to keep siblings placed together."

If you are interested in becoming a foster or adoptive parent, call 1-800-7PARENT or go to www.dhhs.ne.gov and search for ‘foster care.’

Becoming a foster parent is not the only way to have a positive impact on the life of a child in foster care. Other great ideas will be available at the forum. For more information, call (308) 865-5362.

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