The Allegheny County Department of Human Services launched a campaign to raise awareness of the need for foster parents for teenagers. The effort was undertaken to reduce the reliance on group, residential and institutional placements for children and youth, in recognition of research and experience showing that children and youth have better outcomes when their placements are with loving, supportive families.
The campaign, called “Foster Goodness,” features the message that foster parents are needed for teenagers in Allegheny County. It encourages those interested in more information to contact the County’s Director’s Action Line (1-800-862-6783) or visit FosterGoodness.org as contacts for more information about fostering.
A key component to the campaign was the creation of videos (which can be viewed on the FosterGoodness.org site, among other places) that testify to the value of foster care for parents and teens alike. The videos feature real people who have been involved with the foster care system in Allegheny County. They include teens talking about the struggles of adjusting to a new temporary family and the joys of finally finding a place where they can feel supported. Also, parents who fostered explain why they have chosen to do it and how they overcame some of the understandable challenges that come from welcoming teens who have lived with trauma into their home.
Importantly, along with just talking about the how fostering can make a difference, the videos showcase the teens in natural settings—playing Frisbee in the park, helping to make dinner—to emphasize that kids in foster care, and the families that open their homes to them, are just normal, everyday people.
This video highlights three spots that are a part of the Foster Goodness Campaign.
Foster Goodness: The real super heroes
Foster Goodness: Breaking down walls and earning trust
Foster Goodness: Walking through the door
For more information on becoming a foster parent, visit fostergoodness.org or call the Director's Action Line at 1-800-862-6783.
To view more videos on foster care in Allegheny County, visit: Foster Goodness