As part of May’s “National Foster Care Month,” the NYC Administration for Children Services (ACS) recognizes and celebrates foster parents, family members, and child welfare professionals.
This includes other members of the community who care for children in need, support parents so that they can safely reunify with their children, and help children find permanent homes and connections.
ACS Commissioner Jess Dannhauser reminded New Yorkers that foster parents provide a safe, nurturing and loving home environment for children in need and encouraged New Yorkers who can open their heart and home to consider becoming a foster parents.
“I want to express my gratitude to all of the staff and foster parents who work diligently and tirelessly to ensure that our City’s children and young people are cared for in a safe, nurturing environment; they are truly an inspiration to us all,” said ACS Commissioner Jess Dannhauser. “Foster parents play a critical role in caring for children and youth who have experienced trauma, partner with parents as they work towards reunifying with their children, and sometimes become permanent family when children are not able to return to their parents.”
“National Foster Care Month gives us an opportunity to acknowledge and honor the dedication of individuals across the City who help take care of children in need,” said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Anne Williams-Isom. “I want to thank all those who have opened their hearts and homes to the City’s children – foster parents, family members, child welfare staff, and all community members that partake in this effort. Your work is critical to ensuring that the littlest New Yorkers are cared for and thriving.”
ACS strives to keep families together by providing a full range of prevention services; however, when a child must be removed from a home due to safety reasons, ACS works to ensure that children receive high-quality care and that children and families receive needed services.
Most children in foster care return home safely to their families.
For those who cannot, ACS works to find loving, stable families for children through adoption or kinship guardianship.
Each year, ACS releases an annual Foster Care Blueprint Progress Report, illustrating the results of the significant work that has been done to improve outcomes for children and families in New York City’s foster care system.
We have made significant progress:
- The number of New York City children in foster care reached a historic low of 7,087 as of January 2022, a 20 percent decrease from just five years ago.
- 43% of children in foster care are placed with kin, up from 31% five years ago. Research shows that children fare best with kin (relatives, close family friends, or other people who are already in a child’s life).
- More than 90% of children in foster care are placed in family foster homes and less than 10 percent of children in foster care are placed in residential/congregate settings.
- ACS has significantly expanded education and career development services for children and youth in foster care.
To ensure that children in foster care receive the care and nurturing they need, foster parents are provided with support and specialized training regarding meeting children’s needs and working with parents who are working towards reunification.
New Yorkers interested in becoming a foster parent can call 311 for more information.
The greatest need is for foster parents who can care for sibling groups and children with special needs.
Prospective foster parents can also contact the ACS WISH line at 877-676-WISH (9474) or visit: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/acs/child-welfare/become-foster-adoptive-parent.page
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