Fostering to Adopt Teens
Fostering to adopt teens is not a very common story. Less than 20% of all adoptions are of children 6 and older, so you can imagine that adoption is just a dream for most older kids in care. This week we are featuring Brittany’s fostering to adopt teens story. Brittany is a foster advocate in her community, a wife, and mother to seven. Her experience with the foster and adoption system is insightful.
Igniting a Passion
Brittany and her husband started their foster journey in August of 2014. They accepted the calling to become foster parents for multiple reasons. Brittany states, “We went into foster care because I was unable to have children of my own. I supported the idea of reuniting families together but was open to adoption if it wasn’t in the child’s best interest to return home. We did end up fostering to adopt.”
In addition to becoming a foster parent, Brittany became inspired to help abused and neglected children. Brittany is now a CASA mentor and advocate. “In 2016, I quit my job to join Lutheran Social Services of Illinois to recruit and train foster parents for a new therapeutic foster care program in the State of Illinois.”
Brittany is now a full-time CASA advocate. “After our last adoption, we surrendered our license as our house became full. I became pregnant and now have a three-year-old daughter and another daughter on the way. In total, we have seven children. I now work as a Therapeutic Mentor for Our Children’s Homestead and Camelot.”
The Adopts Begin
In November of 2016, Brittany and her husband adopted their first son Micai, who is twelve. Two years later their daughter Sunny (who is currently nineteen) became part of their forever family. Later in 2018, they adopted their two sons, Michael who is now 18 and Sean who is now 17 in November 2018.
Brittany expresses, “The best experience I’ve had is adopting my four children, especially my teens. Everyone only wants to adopt small children, and our teens are often forced to go to residential facilities. They are the most vulnerable children and often ask for love in the most unconventional ways.” Brittany goes on to say, “I went from having a step-daughter to seven children. We are a very mixed family, and each one of my children has taught me something new. A child doesn’t have to be biologically yours for you to have unconditional love for them.”
For those considering becoming foster parents, Brittany advises, “If you have the room, consider adopting teenagers. They are in desperate need of loving and safe homes. They are our future. Having loving parents can save them from a life of crime and death.”
Thank you to Brittany and her family. It is wonderful to hear about your family and advocacy. For those families in the process of foster to adopt. Foster Love - Together We Rise offers free adoption day photography through our Framing Forever program. For more information visit our Framing Forever page here.