AUGUSTA, Ga. – Statistics with the Child Welfare League of America show more than 19,000 children were victims of abuse or neglect in the state of Georgia.
Many of those children end up in the foster care system. May is National Foster Care month, so we took a look at some of the problems associated with the system.
Some foster children are harder to place into families than others. They sometimes have a background of abuse, or an at-risk home that makes them act out. According to the Court Appointed Special Advocates Georgia division, 8,000 children are in the foster care system on any given day in Georgia. 300 of those kids passed through the system here in Augusta.
Across the river in South Carolina, the problem is worse. The South Carolina Department of Social Services reports that only 40 percent of foster children find families.
State agencies are working to lower this number to help these children succeed later in life, by increasing the number of loving homes these children can come to even temporarily.
Foster Care agencies find that a child with a foster family is more likely to be well adjusted than a child placed in an institution.
Tymara Horne, a recruitment officer for the foster agency; Georgia MENTOR says, “Right now there’s just a lot more kids coming into care than having foster parents on hand to be able to place those children in homes instead of institutions.”
A couple of the requirements to become a foster parent are a criminal records check, a medical examination, and a home safety check. You can find more information on foster children and how to get involved on the CASA, Georgia MENTOR, or Child Welfare League of America websites.