A Spirit of Generosity

May 30, 2023 - Foster Care and Adoption


June 2023 Story Image 2

“We really want to cultivate a spirit of generosity,” Katie and Kevin said of their experience as a foster family. “There is enough,” they went on, meaning enough love, space and time to share with children who need it. They have a good sense of themselves and goals for their family. These are excellent traits, especially for families hoping to foster or adopt.

The couple had one biological daughter when they connected with PCHAS Foster Care & Adoption in 2018. They wanted to grow their family and had long believed adoption would be part of the plan. At the same time, they were (and wanted to remain) content with their lives and family. “We want to be open and welcoming, but we’re also secure as a family of three,” they shared. “There’s not a finite amount of love. We can always love more people.”

This spirit has served the family well. They planned to adopt a child from the foster care system, but the wait was much longer than expected. They practiced patience, learned more about themselves, and evaluated their situation.

Katie and Kevin did not initially open their home for emergency foster care placements because they weren’t sure they could bring kids into their family on short notice. Yet, as they waited, they understood the process better. They also interacted with PCHAS staff and learned what supportive case management entails. Both remember Stephanie Barron, PCHAS Foster Care & Adoption Case Manager Supervisor, encouraging them with great advice. “She told us we have to keep living our life.” 

Once they felt comfortable and opened their home for fostering, they matched with a child needing a family in about two months. It was the holiday season, and a lot was going on, but the family leaned into their belief that “there is enough” and welcomed her with open arms. They even expanded a birthday party to include the child because she hadn’t had one before. 

Like most parents, Kevin and Katie wanted to be sure their choices were in their daughter's best interest. They wondered how she’d handle loss, ambiguous timelines and sharing her space, time and parents’ attention. It hasn’t all been easy, but they are proud of her resilience and confident they are living out the values they want to teach her most.

The first child went to live with a relative, and the family has since welcomed two more children through foster care. They say it’s been helpful to remember foster care seems foreign to many people, but it’s about loving and caring for kids—giving them what all kids need. It’s also been helpful to connect with other families because they can normalize and validate experiences unique to foster care.

Katie and Kevin have some great insights for families considering foster care:

  • Be patient with not understanding or knowing the whole picture. You’ll want to know as much as you can, but much of it is out of your hands.
  • Have grace, patience and kindness with each other as you let the process happen.
  • You have to see this as a long-haul process. It helps if you have a flexible picture of the kids and timeframe in mind.

And they had two more pieces of advice we think are golden:

  1. You hear people say, “I could never say goodbye” or “I couldn’t love them the same,” but you might surprise yourself. You have to experience it!
  2. Go to that info meeting. Learn more about it. Even if you don’t decide to foster or adopt, you may be able to help in other ways.

PCHAS is grateful for how Kevin and Katie opened their family and shared their love with kids in foster care. We hope you'll take their advice if you’ve ever considered fostering or adopting. Sign Up for an Online Info Session or Connect With Us to learn more.

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