Did you know that every month 100 Milwaukee County children enter foster care? Right now, there are approximately 2,600 children in foster care. These children come from diverse backgrounds and have a wide range of needs. What they have in common is a need for a nurturing, temporary place to call home. In our work as adoption and foster care advocates, we see how the lives of children and families have been affected when a family is in distress. But we also see what good can happen when a community pulls together and helps a family through difficult times.
That is one of the reasons the recruitment team at Children’s Service Society of Wisconsin and some of the foster/adoption staff has teamed up to work together to make connections in the community. We are stepping out of our normal job duties to develop a comprehensive grassroots initiative to move towards solving some of the major issues in our community revolving around child welfare.
We call ourselves the C.I.A. – the Canvassing Initiative Assembly. We will be canvassing communities in and around Milwaukee County, going door to door in residential neighborhoods, and approaching local businesses asking them to team with us and support the Bureau of Milwaukee Child Welfare’s mission. Our goal is to get our information out to the community and help recruit much needed foster homes. Most people don’t even realize the great need that we have in our city for quality foster homes. This initiative is so important to us, because we care about what is happening in our community and about the children and the families who are affected. Public child welfare agencies cannot meet the complex needs of foster children and families alone.
Keeping children safe is everybody’s responsibility, and involves the collaboration between child welfare agencies, schools, neighbors, associations and businesses.
–Laura Goba, adoption placement supervisor, and Arles Lawrence, recruitment program supervisor, Children’s Service Society of Wisconsin