foster care survival kits

BE A HERO TO A KID IN FOSTER CARE

Rightly so, most people are focused on the health and economic impacts of the COVID-19. But did you know that children are secondary victims of the coronavirus? 

 

Anytime kids are at home for long stretches of time with financially-strapped and emotionally-stressed parents, incidences of child abuse and neglect go up. 

 

Teachers are the number one reporters of abuse and neglect, and if kids are out of school and away from teachers for months at a time, abuse and neglect remains unknown to those who can help stop it. 

 

So while the virus itself affects adults, the solution to ensure it doesn’t spread - schools closings, social isolation, and quarantines - hurt kids. 

here is the good news

Thousands of Virginians are stepping up to take care of vulnerable children - they are called foster parents.  Right now, these foster families are experiencing the same changes, loss of control and child care challenges that we all are. However, foster families are enduring the new normal while raising kids from hard places inside their own places of sanctuary - their homes. 

 

Even before the coronavirus hit, 50% of foster family quit within the first year, most often due to a lack of social support. Virginia simply can’t afford foster parents to get burned out while also facing an increase of kids coming into care. 

What can YOU to do help? 

Donate items for building Foster Care Survival Kits to help foster families adapt to the new normal.

3 ways to do it:

drop off

kit ITEMS

 

 

For Richmond and Hampton Roads area heroes: Pick up unopened, new crafts, books, toys, snacks, or games from a local store. 

*Keep scrolling for drop off/shipping locations and for a list of suggested items

donate digitally

For heroes across (and outside!) Virginia: Order new crafts, toys, books, games and snacks and send them to Virginia’s Kids Belong.

*Keep scrolling for drop off/shipping locations and for a list of suggested items

Donate gift cards or tablets

For heroes across (and outside!) Virginia:

Many kids in foster care have unique needs for trauma-sensitive or sensory-sensitive toys and games. Giving their family a gift card from widely accessible stores can greatly help with whatever child-specific needs they might have! 

do it yourself option

Do you know a foster family personally? Rally friends and family to build your own kit using the suggested items below and drop it off while maintaining social distancing!

suggested list of kit contents

*Items must be new and unopened. 

*Please do not buy “soft toys” such as stuffed animals unless they are wrapped given their tendency to attract germs.

need inspiration?

We’ve created Amazon Wish Lists for your convenience.

*Fully viewable on desktop only

GET a survival kit!

Are you a foster family and interested in a kit? Contact us and we will send you instructions! We're here to help!

“This kit is a game-changer! School is out til fall, counseling appointments are canceled indefinitely, and adjusting to life without all of normal routines is hard for anyone. But for kids from hard places who thrive on structure, it’s even harder. Not only do we feel appreciated as foster parents, but my kid feels seen and loved."

- Richmond Foster Mom

THANK YOU TO THE FOLLOWING PARTNERS FOR MAKING THIS POSSIBLE!

Are you an organization who would like to help coordinate this effort online and rally your network? Please email connect@vakidsbelong.org

We are continuously adding partners.

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