Today, I wanted to share some foster care quotes with you. I’ve been a foster mom for 8 years now. Our family has experienced a lot of joy and a lot of stress and sorrow.
Until you are involved in foster care, you may not have any idea what it is like. It’s truly a roller coaster of emotions.
Foster care is a world that sits behind a curtain. There’s depths that you won’t truly understand until you’ve walked the path.
That said, all foster parents have a different experience. Every case is different because of the people involved, the children’s behaviors, the trauma the children have experienced, the judge involved, the laws of the state, and the social workers involved.
I’ve sat in a courtroom over and over again, knowing way more than the person who is testifying. Cringing when they get the details of the case wrong.
At the 3 year mark in our foster daughters’ case, the case file about our kids was massive. It probably took up an entire drawer of a file cabinet. No joke.
Shocking Foster Care Statistics
Over the past 8 years, our family has opened our home to 5 children. We’ve experienced tearful good-byes and cases that dragged on for years. Our last placement was with us for almost 4 years before we finalized their adoption. Nothing is timely or certain in foster care.
Even though foster families, biological parents, and foster children are better served when things are done in a timely manner.
(The following statistics are from iFoster.org and Children’s Home Society)
There are approximately 424,000 kids in the United States foster care system.
The average age of foster child is 6 ½ years old.
Over 20,000 foster kids age out of the foster care system between the ages of 18 – 21 each year. They are left to find a way to support for themselves without the help of an adoptive family. Many of these will find themselves homeless and unemployed.
70 percent of foster kids would like to go to college. However, only 3% of foster youth who age out of the foster system earn a college degree.
One in four foster kids won’t graduate (or get a GED).
One in 2 who age out of the foster care system will have a substance dependence.
According to the Adoption Network, in the United States, 1 in 3 people consider adopting at some point in their life, but only 2% of them actually adopt.
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Inspirational Foster Care Quotes:
Some people are motivated and moved to action by statistics and others need inspiration.
The following are inspirational foster care quotes and inspirational quotes that can definitely apply to fostering. I hope that as foster parents, adoptive parents, or as someone interested in foster parenting you find some encouraging words today.
“You might be temporary in their lives, they might be temporary in yours. But there is nothing temporary about the love or the lesson.” – Tonia Christle
“Everyone longs to be loved. And the greatest thing we can do is to let people know that they are loved and capable of loving.” – Fred Rogers
“Be the change you want to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi
“Every kid is one caring adult away from being a success story.” – Josh Shipp
“Unconditional love is not based on the performance of the receiver, but on the character of the giver.” – Jack Frost
“The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” – Mark Twain
“Parenthood requires love, not DNA.” – Unknown
“With every word we utter, with every action we take, we know our kids are watching us. We as parents are their most important role models.” – Michelle Obama
“Little souls find their way to you, whether they’re from your womb or someone else’s.” – Sheryl Crow, adoptive parent
“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” – Theodore Roosevelt
“Families don’t have to match. You don’t have to look like someone else to love them.” – Leigh Anne Tuohy
“Somehow, destiny comes into play. These children end up with you and you end up with them. It’s something quite magical.” – Nicole Kidman, adoptive parent
“You may be in our home for a season but you’ll be in our hearts forever.” – Unknown
“Life is beautiful. It’s about giving. It’s about family.” – Walt Disney, adoptive parent
“I always questioned whether I was ready to adopt. Then I realized, no child was ready to be an orphan.” –Unknown
The Truth about Foster Care:
Inspiration is nice, but with the ever increasing foster parent turnover rate, there’s a need for raw truth. The hardest thing about becoming a foster parent is the uncertainty of the outcome, alongside our general lack of preparation for the difficulty of foster care.
Here’s some quotes that inspire while acknowledging the hard truths and difficulties that one encounters in foster care.
“I am not afraid to grieve. I am afraid of what will happen to these children if no one took the risk to love them.” – Unknown
“The more healthy relationships a child has, the more likely he will be to recover from trauma and thrive. Relationships are the agents of change and the most powerful therapy is human love.” – Dr. Bruce Perry
“The greatest gift you and I have been given is love. While there are many forms of love, the strongest one, and most important for a foster child, is that of unconditional love.” – Dr. John DeGarmo
“If every Christian family brought in a child who needed a family we would put the foster care system out of business.” — Shane Claiborne
“If you can help a child, you don’t have to spend years repairing an adult.” – Joyce Meyer
“What makes a family is neither the absence of tragedy nor the ability to hide from misfortune, but the courage to overcome it and, from that broken past, write a new beginning.” ― Steve Pemberton
“Courage does not always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, ‘I will try again tomorrow.'” – Mary Ann Radmacher
“You may choose to look the other way, but you can never say again that you did not know.” William Wilberforce
Jason Johnson Foster Care Quotes
Jason Johnson, author of Reframing Foster Care, is a great source of inspiration and encouragement for foster parents. More than once his words have stopped me in my tracks and made me feel completely understood as a foster parent. Here’s some of the best Jason Johnson quotes.
“Be free from the burden to be something for these kids that only Jesus intended Himself to be. Our job isn’t to be their savior; it’s simply to love these kids as our Savior has loved us – fully, freely, and sacrificially – and to trust Him with the rest. Give yourself some slack. No one is strutting their way through foster care; we’re all limping in some way….” – Jason Johnson
“God didn’t call you to this because He thought you could handle it, and He certainly isn’t surprised by the fact that there are those times when you can’t. He called you to this to show what He can do through you.” – Jason Johnson
“In the midst of your weakness and the wake of your struggle, “success” as a foster or adoptive parent isn’t measured by your capacity to keep everything in order but by your ability to trust that even in the chaos Jesus is beautiful – and that even in the mess, so is what you’re doing for these kids.” – Jason Johnson
“What you are doing is infinitely more in God’s eyes than what it feels or looks like today or how well or how poorly you think you’re doing. What you are doing is more than the sum total of all those good things the enemy wants to convince you you’re failing to accomplish today.” – Jason Johnson
Scriptures on Foster Care and Adoption
What does the Bible say about Foster Care? I would say that most Scriptures point to loving our neighbors and caring for others the way Christ loves us. Here’s some Scriptures to encourage encourage you or the foster family in your life.
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. James 1:27
The Lord watches over the foreigner and sustains the fatherless and the widow, but He frustrates the ways of the wicked. Psalm 146:9
Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow. Isaiah 1:17
Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Proverbs 31:8
The King will reply, “I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.” Matthew 25:40
Foster Care Encouragement from The Garmans
Lastly, here’s some foster care encouragement from my own home.
“Fostering is not about us. It never was and never will be. Foster care is about serving, loving on others, and being the one constant in a child’s life when they are going through a really hard time.” – Jeremy Garman
“When we began this journey, I was quite eager to adopt and “complete” our family. However, nothing is ever certain, or done in a timely manner in foster care. Find joy in the moments you have together. Enjoy the journey. We may never “complete” our family, but we will have helped some sweet souls along the way.” – Crystal Garman
“It can be really easy to get caught up in the question of Has it been worth it? Has the pain, the sorrow, the time, the energy, other things we missed out on because of foster care, been worth it? For our family, it’s always been important to remember that foster care is not about our family and what we want. It’s about helping little kids, serving God, and showing Christ’s love to others.” – Crystal Garman
I hope you have found some encouragement in these Foster Care Quotes. My hope is that by blending statistics, inspiration, and truth that the reality of foster care will shine through. Fostering is really hard, but most things that are worthwhile in life are.
If you are thinking about becoming a foster family or have questions about foster care, feel free to reach out.
You can learn about the best way to support foster homes here. There’s lots of great things (some don’t cost a thing!) that really bring support and joy to foster parents in the trenches.
If you’ve ever wondered what is it like to foster with biological small children still at home, you can read our family’s story here to help you decide the best thing for your family.
Also, be sure to check out my other Foster Care articles here.
I just found your website and was encouraged. What you’re doing in fostering is a wonderful blessing. My book is coming out May 2nd and you might like it. It’s called Help! I’m a Foster Parent: Experiences from Real People, Hope from a Real God. Full of scriptures and prayers and experiences on 34 topics from families around the country (and Canada). I didn’t mean to make this a commercial, sorry! I am available, though, for guest blogging. I am bookmarking your site and will share it. Thank you–keep strong.
Thank you for the encouraging words. We put our fostering journey on pause last year after we adopted our 2 youngest kids from foster care. It was quite a journey – 4 years in the system! We are taking a break! Good luck with your book launch and best wishes on your fostering journey.