Be part of the future. Support foster kids with disabilities.
Imagine how hard it is to be a child entering the foster care system. You are six years old (the median age of kids entering foster care). You have just been yanked from your surroundings and the care of your biological parents. Likely, you have experienced trauma, sometimes so severe that it will impact you for the rest of your life.
In some instances, you will arrive at your new home with a suitcase. But more than likely, a garbage bag will hang over your small shoulder, or you’ll have nothing – nothing but the clothes you are wearing.
At first, you will not be able to have much (if any) contact with your parents. If you have brothers or sisters entering the system with you, case workers will try to keep you together, but this is often not possible. If no other kin is able to step in and provide care, you’ll move in with strangers. This means you may have to go to a new school, try to make new friends, and somehow find a way to navigate an uncertain and confusing future.
At this very moment in America, nearly 450,000 kids are in foster care. They are the most disadvantaged and vulnerable population in our nation. And within this group, kids with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) have experienced severe difficulties with being placed in adequate, loving homes. Instead, many will spend months, or years, languishing in an institutional setting.
That’s why Evergreen is stepping in to do what we do best – protect and serve individuals with I/DD through our new EVERGREEN KIDS program.
Next month, we are opening our first Tennessee community home for foster kids with I/DD. In addition, we are partnering with the Department of Children and Families to find parents who are trained, prepared and willing to provide loving homes for kids with disabilities.
The KIDS entering Evergreen’s care need clothes and shoes, school supplies, backpacks, toys and a suitcase – so they never have to use a garbage bag to transport their belongings again. Evergreen’s new community home for foster KIDS is empty. We are asking for your help to turn this house into a home with a donation for us to purchase furniture, cooking and kitchen supplies, bath items, toys, blankets and pillows.
We need to raise $10,000 to provide 20 KIDS with the supplies they need to start this school year and to help furnish this community home for foster KIDS with I/DD by August 31st.
*The state of Tennessee does not supply any of these items for foster kids. We rely on our community to help provide the love and financial support needed to ensure that our EVERGREENKIDS have the same opportunities as their peers.
Or, if you prefer to purchase items directly, you can send them to our Chattanooga office at:
5600 Brainerd Rd.
Chattanooga TN 37411