Foster parents needed

November 13, 2008 10:01:27 AM PST
Thousands of children, including many with disabilities, are in need of foster parents. Foster parenting children with disabilities goes beyond providing a loving and supportive environment. it Requires special training that will enable them to understand the child's disability.

Jeanette Arguijo is a mother of three biological and two foster children. She has been a foster mother to children with disabilities since 1996.

"I really enjoy it," said Arguijo. "You know, making a difference in every child with a need. My joy is to see the improvement, the behavior change, or maybe called issues improvement."

Seguin Services in Cicero is one of the few organizations that works with foster parents to children with disabilities. They have two programs, says staff member Wendy McDaniel.

"Children wit behavioral issues, our behavior children range in age from around 11 years old to 17 years old. Our medical programs are newborn to age 17," said McDaniel.

For each program there is intensive training.

"They would go through our five-week program as well as required DCFS five week program. We also require CPR, first aid and behavior management training as well," said McDaniel.

Foster parents for bilingual children with disabilities are in demand, says case manager Jasmine Molina.

"We have more children in the state that are bilingual that aren't in bilingual homes," said Molina.

Although being a foster parent to children with disabilities requires a little more patience, it's rewarding.

Seguin Services has placed 150 children with disabilities with foster parents. There's a need for more parents to get involved.

For more information go to Seguin's web site: www.seguin.org.


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