Tag Archives: foster parent

Mid Shore Foster Parents Celebrate Foster Parent Appreciation Month

Foster parents from the Mid Shore recently gathered to celebrate Foster Parent Appreciation Month at the Kent Island Yacht Club in Chester, MD.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIn photo (top): Pictured front row, left to right are Talbot County foster parents and Talbot County Department of Social Services staff Courtney Marvel, Option Respite Coordinator, Talbot County Department of Social Services; Berkely Dickerson, Kalinda Dickerson, Paulett Frieson, Sandra Caldwell, April Sharp, director of Talbot County Department of Social Services; and Christine M. Abbatiello, Foster Care/Adoptions Supervisor, Talbot County Department of Social Services. Pictured back row, left to right: Thomas Frieson, Kathy Jenkins, Norwood Caldwell, and Paris Quillet, Special Projects Coordinator, Talbot County Department of Social Services.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIn photo (in middle): Pictured back row, left to right, are Caroline County foster parents John Borga, Nancy Borga, Dawn Cordrey, Rodney Cordrey, Valerie Gross, Ed Gross. Front row, left to right, Patrick Hubbard, Rachel Hubbard, Elizabeth Nichols, and Nancy Downes.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIn photo (below): Pictured back row, left to right, are Caroline County foster parents Elizabeth Lake, James Lake, Sandra Washington, James Patrick. Middle row, left to right, are foster parents Thomas Copper, Aleta Copper, Linda Hopkins, and Penny Patrick. Front row, left to right, are Loretta Morris, Bonnie Shuler, and Shirley Acree.

 

 

 

Wilsons Named as 2013 Talbot County Foster Parents of the Year

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERATyron and Emprin Wilson of Trappe were recently selected as the 2013 Foster Parents of the Year by the Talbot County Department of Social Services. The Wilsons have been licensed foster parents in Talbot County since March 31, 2011. According to Christine M. Abbatiello, Foster Care/Adoptions Supervisor at Talbot County Department of Social Services, “The Wilsons have been a loving, caring, nurturing entity in their foster child’s life and supportive of the foster child’s biological mother during the placement in their home.”

Emprin Wilson was in foster care as a child herself and adopted at age four by her foster parents. She comments, “My foster parents always told me I was special because they picked me.”

While she has two children and three grandchildren of her own, she adds, “I love children and want to give back to the community. My foster mother showed me unconditional love and I want to do the same for other children.”

For further information about becoming a foster or adoptive parent, call Talbot County Department of Social Services at 410-820-7371.

In photo: Pictured left to right are Emprin and Tyron Wilson of Trappe, who were recently selected as the 2013 Talbot County Department of Social Services Foster Parents of the Year.

Mid-Shore Foster Families Celebrate at Annual Holiday Party

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFoster families from Caroline, Dorchester and Talbot counties recently celebrated at their annual Holiday Party at the Easton Volunteer Fire Department in Easton, MD. Over 150 foster and adoptive parents and their children attended this year’s event. Activities included a holiday store, arts and crafts, a holiday meal prepared by the Chesapeake Culinary Center in Denton, a DJ, and a visit from Santa. The members, dinner committee, and youth group of Saint Paul’s Lutheran Church in Easton purchased the gifts for the foster children.

For further information about becoming a foster or adoptive parent in Talbot County, contact Megan Palanci at the Talbot County Department of Social Services at 410-820-7371. An information session will be held on Tuesday, Wednesday, January 23, 2013, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. at the Dorchester County Department of Social Services at 627 Race Street in Cambridge, MD.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIn photo, middle: Pictured back row, left to right, are Keondra Polk, Kalinda Dickerson, Dr. Berkley Dickerson, and Keirra Dickerson. Pictured front row is Israel Dickerson. The Dickerson family of Easton enjoyed the Holiday Party’s meal.

In photo, bottom: Pictured left to right are William McDonnell, Director of Dorchester County Department of Social Services, April Sharp, Director of Talbot County Department of Social Services; Dina Daly, Director of Caroline County Department of Social Services, and Judge Karen Jensen, Caroline County Circuit Court.

In photo, top: Pictured front row, left to right, are Matthew, Noah, and Marcella Cordrey of Greensboro. Pictured back row, left to right, are parents Dawn and Rodney Cordrey. Noah Cordrey was celebrating his recent adoption.

Daisy Combs of Millington Named 2012 Queen Anne’s County Foster Parent of the Year

When the call comes, Daisy Combs of Millington has a place in her heart and home for the children of Queen Anne’s County. Combs was recently named the 2012 Foster Parent of the Year by the Queen Anne’s County Department of Social Services.

According to Carol O’Donnell, Resource Home Worker with the Queen Anne’s County Department of Social Services, at a recent event honoring the county’s foster parents, “It is rare if Daisy doesn’t have a foster care placement in her home. In 26 years of serving as a resource home for the county, she has fostered 79 children of all ages.”

O’Donnell acknowledged Combs special gift of enabling the Queen Anne’s County Department of Social Services to keep many sibling groups in foster care together over the past 26 years. She adds, “Daisy has been at her full capacity of four children on many occasions so that children do not have to be separated. She has also always been instrumental in working with other foster parents and the Department to coordinate visitation of sibling groups if all the children are not placed in her home.”

When asked about why she became a foster parent, Combs comments, “I had the time and wanted to do something for kids.”

Combs says she keeps doing foster care because she knows it matters for the children she has in her care. She has kept a list of every child who has been in her care over the 26 years she has been licensed and keeps in touch with some of them. She states, “The care goes beyond when I had them. The best part is getting that phone call from a foster child after they leave, thanking me for what I did for them. I know that I was able to be there and fill the gap for them.”

O’Donnell adds, “What is also special about Daisy is that she completely understands the need for children to stay connected with their biological families while in care. She is very professional in handling concerns for the children she cares for. She also provides respite for other foster parents who need a day away from their duties.

Currently, Ms. Combs is the central meeting spot for four children who were placed in two different homes for adoption. She remains in contact with each adoptive family and facilitates visits between the two as often as possible. Ms. Combs is an invaluable member of our foster care team.”

For further information about becoming a foster parent, contact the Queen Anne’s County Department of Social Services at (410) 758-8000.

In Photo: Pictured left to right are Cathy Dougherty, Director of the Queen Anne’s County Department of Social Services; Daisy Combs of Millington, 2012 Queen Anne’s County Foster Parent of the Year; and Carol O’Donnell, Resource Home Worker with the Queen Anne’s County Department of Social Services.

Tresentes Named 2012 Talbot County Foster Parents of the Year

Tragedy has turned to joy for foster parents, Guy Tresente and Martha Reyes-Tresente of Easton, who were named as the 2012 Talbot County Foster Parents of the Year by the Talbot County Department of Social Services. The Tresentes, who lost their only child, Grace Edyta, at 11 days old and could not have any more children, became licensed as foster parents in 2010. Guy Tresente, who was exposed to foster care through a high school friend, comments, “We view it as a ministry. I see children as the future.”

Over the last two years, the Tresentes have provided foster care and respite to 10 children. According to Christine Abbatiello, LGSW, foster care worker for Talbot County Department of Social Services, “They have been instrumental in working with three different sibling groups to keep the siblings together, even when it might mean driving long distances to keep the children in their schools.” She adds, “In addition, Guy and Martha have gone above and beyond to connect with the biological families of their foster children. They have also worked with some of the sibling groups to incorporate as much of their family of origin culture into their foster home.”

Since both Guy and his wife, Martha, speak Spanish fluently, they have also helped the Talbot County Department of Social Services recruit Spanish-speaking foster parents. Martha, who came to America from El Salvador in 1993 and to Easton in 2004, is the youngest of eight children. She and her husband are active in Emanuel Bible Believing Church in Easton. Martha, who went to seminary in Guatemala, also preaches at a church in Guatemala. She comments, “What is satisfying about doing foster care is giving children the affection and love when they come from a place where they may not have it.”

For further information about becoming a foster parent in Talbot County, call 410-820-7371. The next Parents Resource for Information Development and Education (PRIDE) Training begins on June 6, 2012.

In photo: Pictured left to right are Martha Reyes-Tresente and Guy Tresente, Talbot County’s 2012 Foster Parents of the Year.

Potlucks at Easton Family YMCA Offer Newly Licensed Foster Parents Support

Several new foster parents have been licensed in Talbot County following recent PRIDE (Parents Resource for Information, Development, and Education) trainings. PRIDE, a model for the development and support of foster and adoptive families, is a 27- hour training program designed to strengthen the quality of family foster care and adoption services by providing a standardized framework for recruiting, preparing, and selecting foster and adoptive parents. It also provides these parents with in-service training and ongoing professional development that provide the skills to manage the issues they will encounter with the children in their care.

In addition to trainings and professional development, foster parents licensed through the Talbot County Department of Social Services are invited to participate in quarterly potluck gatherings. These gatherings offer foster parents the opportunity to support one another, as well as offer their families a chance to mingle and participate in family fun. As a Department of Social Services partner, the Easton Family YMCA has offered its new Thomas E. Hill Center for Youth Development for a few of the foster parent gatherings. The Center’s new climbing wall has been popular among the children in attendance. It was through this partnership with the YMCA that two YMCA employees became interested in becoming foster parents.

Wanda Ball-Gross, who currently works with the YMCA’s Childwatch Program, learned about becoming a foster parent from a foster family utilizing childcare at the YMCA. She comments, “I had been exposed to a family that did foster care while living in Severna Park as a child. I always admired how the children interacted with one another as they spent time as one big family. I think it was a sign that I met foster families here. I have realized that this is where I am supposed to be.”

Newly trained foster parents Jodi and Bob Davis of Easton also learned about the need for foster families at the YMCA where they both work. Jodi is Director for Youth Development at the YMCA and Bob, retired from the MD Department of Natural Resources, works with the YMCA climbing wall. Jodi comments, “We are huge outdoor people and feel that being able to expose kids to the outdoors is important. The PRIDE training put us in the shoes of the children, helping us to understand what they have lost when they go into foster care and how we can help with that.” She adds, “One of the exercises we did involved us writing down our dreams and then having someone else take the piece of paper and tear it up. It helped us look at things through their eyes.”

For further information about becoming a foster or adoptive parent in Talbot County, contact Katie Russ at the Talbot County Department of Social Services at 410-820-7371. An information session will be held on April 12, 2012 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at the Queen Anne’s County Department of Social Services, 125 Comet Drive in Centreville.

In photo: Newly trained and licensed Talbot County foster parents recently participated in a potluck gathering at the Easton Family YMCA in Easton. Pictured front row, left to right, are Kathy Jenkins of Easton, Katie Russ, coordinator of Option Respite at the Talbot County Department of Social Services; Christina and Greg Taney of Easton, Christine M. Abbatiello, LGSW, Special Projects Coordinator at the Talbot County Department of Social Services; and Jodi Davis of Easton. Pictured back row, left to right, are Wanda Ball-Gross of Easton, Kim Crews of Wye Mills, and Bob Davis of Easton.

Mid-Shore Foster Families Celebrate at Annual Holiday Party

Foster families from Caroline, Dorchester and Talbot counties recently celebrated at their annual Holiday Party at the Cordova Volunteer Fire Department in Cordova, MD. Over 200 foster and adoptive parents and their children attended this year’s event. Activities included a holiday store, arts and crafts, a holiday meal prepared by Susie’s Kitchen in Centreville, a DJ, and a visit from Santa. Talbot Bank, the Cambridge Elks Lodge, the Salvation Army and other community partners helped purchase the gifts for the foster children.

For further information about becoming a foster or adoptive parent in Talbot County, contact Katie Russ at the Talbot County Department of Social Services at 410-820-7371. An information session will be held on January 31 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at the Caroline County Department of Social Services, 207 S. Third Street in Denton.

In Photo Above: Pictured left to right are Debbi Short, Talbot County Department of Social Services Advisory Board member, and daughter, Banchi Short; Master Jo Ann Asparagus of the Caroline County Circuit Court, and Pam Clay, Talbot County Department of Social Services Advisory Board member.

In Photo: Evan Ensminger, son of Talbot County Foster Parents Lisa and Todd Ensminger, reviews his list with Santa Claus at the Regional Foster Care Holiday Party.

In Photo: De’Avion Camper, son of Dorchester County Foster Parent Elisa Camper, tells Santa Claus what he would like to find under the Christmas tree.

Become a Foster Parent – You Could Change a Life!!

Join us for an information session in our Kent Island office!

WHEN: 12:00PM on Tuesday, August 30, 2011(light refreshments!)

WHERE: 1103 Butterworth Court
Stevensville, MD 21666
(Behind Food Lion, in Thompson Creek Business Park)

Do you have extra room in your home and your heart? Come learn about treatment foster care and the opportunity to serve as a foster parent in your own community. We especially need parents who can take teenage boys and girls. Please come to our information session and bring a friend. RSVP to 410-643-9290 or mstokes@childrenschoice.org

www.childrenschoice.org

Audrey Hansen of Easton Named Talbot County Foster Parent of the Year

The Talbot County Department of Social Services recently announced that Audrey Hansen of Easton was named the 2011 Foster Parent of the Year. Although Hansen has only been a foster parent since September 2010, she has played an important role in providing short term emergency and weekend respite care for children of all ages in Talbot County.

According to Susan Merriken, Foster Care and Adoption Supervisor at the Talbot County Department of Social Services, “In the short time she has been a foster parent, Audrey has never said ‘no’ when we have asked her to take a child. She has been a vital part of our foster care team in providing children in Talbot County safe environments in times of need.”

Hansen, who works full-time with the Maryland Department of the Environment never had children of her own. She comments, “I always wondered about doing foster care because I have always loved kids, including my nieces and nephews. I didn’t think I could do foster care and work full-time. I found out differently after taking the Department of Social Services Parent Resources for Information, Development and Education (P.R.I.D.E.) parent training program for foster and adoptive parents.”

She credits the supportive staff at the Talbot County Department of Social Services, the Talbot County Public Schools and the Easton Family YMCA with making her job as a foster parent successful adding, “I learned that there are many support systems available to help foster parents who work, including before school and afterschool care in Talbot County.”

Although Hansen started with teenagers, she has had children of all ages, from elementary through high school. She states, “I love giving these children a safe and happy place to stay, where they may gain a sense of normalcy they may never have had before.”

Hansen explains that the children she has had in her home are respectful and a delight to have around, which is often not the perception of the community. She adds, “These children just want to know someone cares. It has been the most rewarding thing I have ever done. I am able to give back to the community by keeping these children in the community they know, which is one of the most important aspects of being a foster parent.”

For information about becoming a licensed foster/adoptive parent, contact the Talbot County Department of Social Services at 410-770-4848 or attend the regional information session for prospective foster/adoptive parents on Tuesday, June 21 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at the Talbot County Department of Social Services at 301 Bay Street, Unit #5 in Easton. The next nine-week P.R.I.D.E. Training at the Talbot County Department of Social Services begins Wednesday, July 6, 2011, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.

In photo: Pictured left to right at the recent Multicultural Festival in Easton are Audrey Hansen of Easton, 2011 Foster Parent of the Year for Talbot County, who has just painted the face of Milan Jiggetts of Hurlock, daughter of Paris Quillet, Regional Independent Living Coordinator with the Dorchester Department of Social Services.

Local Businesses Assist Area Foster Parents with Tax Preparation

Two local tax firms, H & R Block in Easton and Sump and Associates, recently assisted Talbot County foster parents and foster children with the preparation of their individual income tax returns. H & R Block of Easton offered to do the federal and state tax returns of foster care youth at no cost and Sump and Associates of Easton offered a 25 percent discount for the preparation of individual federal and state tax returns for foster parents.

Eric Griffioen, district manager of H & R Block in Easton, comments, “Centra Dashiell in our office had done a presentation on taxes for the Talbot County Department of Social Services. We were made aware of the need for tax services for foster care youth and wanted to get more involved.”

Darian Sump of Sump and Associates, adds, “Through my involvement with CASA, I became aware of the commitment that foster parents make in our community, as well as their needs. This is a way I could show our support and appreciation for all that they do.”

In photo: Pictured front row, left to right, are Katie Russ, coordinator of Option Respite, Talbot County Department of Social Services; Jackie Veeney, assistant director of Adult/Family Services & Income Support, Talbot County Department of Social Services; and Darian Sump of Sump and Associates. Pictured back row, left to right, are Eric Griffioen, District Manager of H & R Block in Easton; Tyler Pepper of Sump and Associates; and Becky Skinner, Foster Care Worker, Talbot County Department of Social Services. Both H & R Block in Easton and Sump and Associates, recently assisted Talbot County foster parents and foster children with the preparation of their individual income tax returns.