National Foster Care Recognition Week 2013
National Foster Care Recognition Week is being observed from February 10 to 16, with a host of activities scheduled across the island. The week which is in its 8th staging is being observed under the theme, “Share Your Heart, Open Your Home – Foster a Child Today!”
CEO of the Child Development Agency (CDA)Carla Francis-Edie noted that the objective of the Week is to bring national attention to the CDA’s foster care programme; to recognize foster parents who are giving of themselves to the children in State care, while encouraging potential foster parents to get on Board.
“Foster care is a vital part of CDA’s Living in Family Environment (LIFE) Programme geared at placing children in families. Our experience suggests that the children do better when they live in loving families where they can get individualized attention, as opposed to being placed in institutions.
The National Foster Care Programme enables persons, who are not the biological parents of a child in residential care to raise and provide a nurturing environment for his/her physical, spiritual and emotional growth and development.
Mrs. Edie noted, “We now have just over 900 children in the foster care programme, and our goal is to significantly increase this number so that we can more effectively address the needs of our children, and open new opportunities to them.
The week will open on Sunday February 10 with a National Church Service at the Jamaica Evangelistic Association, 86E Waltham Park Road beginning at 10:00am. Services will also be held in St. Ann at the St. Ann’s Bay Baptist Church; in St. Mary at the Port Maria Emanuel Apostolic Church; in St. James at the Calvary Baptist Church, and in Trelawny at the William Knibb Baptist Church.
Appreciation functions for foster parents are also a key feature of the week’s activities. Foster parents in CDA’s South East region (Kingston and St. Andrew, St. Thomas, and St. Catherine) will be feted at a luncheon at Tropical Elegance while in the Southern region (St. Elizabeth, Manchester and Clarendon); the foster parents will be treated at Miguel’s Restaurant.
In the North East Region, (St. Ann, St. Mary and Portland), CDA officers will celebrate foster parents at a special brunch, while in the western region (St. James, Trelawny, Westmoreland and Hanover) the foster parents appreciation will be combined with a training workshop to enhance the skills of the parents.
Various public education activities and media events will also be held across the Island.
Contact: CDA PR Unit (Prudence Barnes/Dahlia Cole)