Since 1996, Karen Hudkins of Trappe has fostered and given respite care to over 30 children in her home, as well as adopting three of them. Hudkins was recently honored as Talbot County’s Foster Parent of the Year at the Mid Shore Foster Parent Appreciation event at the Krystal Q in Easton.
In addition to being a foster and adoptive parent, Hudkins and her husband Rick have raised four of their own children and are involved in the lives of their 12 grandchildren. When asked why she took on such an onerous task, Hudkins comments, “If you give children one thing, like a safe home in which to stay, they could have everything one day.”
For Hudkins the reward of being involved in foster care is that she can do something meaningful for the lives of these children. She has become such a proponent of foster care that she now assists in teaching the Parents Resource for Information Development and Education (PRIDE) Foster Adoptive Training for new foster/adoptive parents. She cites her close relationship with the Talbot County Department of Social Services as critical to her success as a foster parent, stating, “It is important to be a part of the team supporting these children, working with the social workers, the biological parents and with other foster parents.”
Susan Merriken, Foster Care and Adoption Supervisor at the Talbot County Department of Social Services, comments, “Karen Hudkins is always willing to go the extra mile when we call her about children in need. She even answers calls in the middle of the night.”
For information about becoming a licensed foster/adoptive parent, contact the Talbot County Department of Social Services at 410-770-4848 or attend an upcoming information session on Thursday, June 24, 2010, from 6 to7:30 p.m. at the Caroline County DSS in Denton.