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© Gail Underwood Parker

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Soapbox Derby: We need a hero!

Wanted:  One champion!

The statistics on foster care are frightening [see below]  We don't need Superman or Wonderwoman.
We need a celebrity spokesperson,
a public champion for all the nameless children.

Where is that hero to take up this cause, to focus attention on the need, to mobilize community action?  

All I want for Christmas?  I want someone to help America take action for the lost futures of these children, to improve these statistics. These children need a better future. That outlook improves most with lifelong connections to caring adults.

Wanted:  One champion!

  • over 500,000 children in foster care in the United States
  • average age of foster children  10 years old
  • most in care due to parental abuse and/or neglect
  • each year an estimated 200,000 children age out of foster care, many only 18, still needing support services, and with no meaningful adult support system or connectionResearch shows that young people in foster care are far more likely then their peers in the general population to endure homelessness, poverty, compromised health, unemployment, incarceration and other adversities after they leave the foster care system*
  • U.S. statistics show that 50% of former foster youth will be homeless during their first two years exiting foster care
  • barely 54 % earned a high school diploma*
  • only 2% earned a Bachelor’s degree or higher*
  • 51% were unemployed*
  • 30% had no health insurance*
  • 25% have been homeless at one time*
  • 30% were receiving public assistance*
  • 84% became a parent often repeating the same cycle they went through* 
Where is the celebrity champion for THIS cause?

Image credits:, the

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