There are just over 5,500 children in the foster care system in Virginia. 550 of those children are in the metro Northern Virginia area. Children are designed to thrive in the context of family. Central to their core development is the need for love, connection, and belonging. In crisis, children become innocent victims and are stripped of those developmental needs. The long-term effects are devastating. The statistics for people who are trafficked, incarcerated, and who don’t finish school, include a high percentage of people who’ve spent time in foster care. It is absolutely within our reach as a local church to come alongside of the 550 children in our area affected by vulnerable family situations.
How are we doing this, and how can you can help?
1. We Resource kids in the foster care system through our Resource Center: each month we fulfill dozens of orders from social workers working in Fairfax County DFS Foster & Adoption division to provide food, hygiene, clothing and baby items to kids in their care who are going without these items.
2. Every other month we host a Respite Night through DC Foster the Family to provide childcare for a night out for foster parents. You can help provide dinner for a Respite Night! Check out the details here.
3. Every month we host a Social Worker Care Group Dinner. Burnout rates among social workers is high. It is critical to come alongside of these frontline workers to pour into them. The health of the children in their care is dependent on the health of our frontline workers.
You can help by sponsoring a dinner for our monthly care group. Cost is around $150. Contact Valerie Nolan at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in learning how to donate and cover a dinner.
4. We support Families who are fostering or have adopted children. There are very unique challenges you face as a family and if you are not already connected to a support system, we would love to help you get connected to resources and support. Contact Brooke Luther at email@example.com and we would love to meet you.
Special Events Coming Up
April 19 – 10:00am – 4:00pm
I Belong Video Project
This special project enables kids in foster care to tell their own stories on camera. By capturing both their seated interview and their interactions and activities throughout an I Belong Project event, professionals create a unique video for each child to aid them in their adoption recruitment. Statistics show this greatly increasing their chances of finding their forever home. You can volunteer at this event or sign up to make a Foster Kid Fun Bag for one of the 14 kids coming to church on April 19. Check it out here.
April 22 – 8:30am – 5:00pm
Hope for the Journey Conference
Hope for the Journey is designed to encourage and equip parents and caregivers meeting the everyday needs of children impacted by adoption and/or foster care. The conference is also a much-needed resource for churches, agencies, and organizations in their care and support of the families and communities they serve.
The conference is broken into 5 modules that will be viewed together through a shared event at Fairfax Church on Saturday, April 22 from 8:30am – 5:00pm. Lunch, snacks and drinks and facilitation will be provided during the experience. You can see all the details and even register here.
August 4 – 2:00 – 4:00pm
The Department of Families services is hosting this special event for youth in foster care who completed high school or a secondary education program during the 2022-2023 school year. This will be an amazing time to celebrate this accomplishment! If you would like to help us provide some drinks and food for the event, please contact Brooke Luther at firstname.lastname@example.org.
December 9 – 10:00am – 4:00pm
Befriend Holiday Party
Each year the Fairfax County of Department of Family Services throws to a party to celebrate the foster care children in their mentor program (Befriend A Child Mentor Program), along with their families and the volunteer mentors who support them. We are thrilled to host this event and help these children have an amazing Christmas celebration! More details to come on how you can help.