Local Nonprofit offers virtual life skills training for Foster kids and parents
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn (WDEF) – Currently there are over 8,000 kids in the foster system in Tennessee and there are only approximately 350 children awaiting adoption. Governor Bill Lee and a local Organization are working to provide more support for those kids and families.”
Governor Bill Lee and TN Fosters Hope focuses on establishing a network of churches statewide to support the foster and adoptive needs of their communities by recruiting and certifying families who can care for foster children with increased needs and by Building pathways for full DCS custody children to find permanent adoption.
“Those children range in age from 1 day old all the way up to adulthood. Their needs are varied. Each one of these children have suffered the trauma of being removed from their home. DCS must rely on the community of average citizens who will open their hearts and their homes to these children,” says Jennifer Nichols, Commissioner of Tennessee’s DCS.
Local Nonprofit founder and foster mom herself, Sandy Pricer, says now more than ever foster families are needing an added layer of support from the community.
“There are support systems out there and in place. If foster parents utilize them, they are helpful. However there needs to be more. It does not reach everyone. It doesn’t meet all the needs. When we brought our three kids in , it was like bringing home babies. It was three more mouths to feed, three more people to get to know and clothe. We felt alone in that,” says Sandy Pricer.
Pricer says a portion of our area’s homeless and incarcerated population have been in the foster care system and she’s hoping with her new organization, Rise Up, they will break down those barriers and provide foster kids with life skills to help them be more successful in the future.
“Somewhere along the way our system has failed a lot of these people and a lot of these children. It is my hope and desire with RiseUp to bring them things they can use, tools to put in their toolbox to go forward with and be successful in their futures. Some of the topics that we have covered over the last few months have been finance literacy , banking, public speaking and communication tips and tricks,” says Pricer.
Rise Up Cooperative offers free life skill classes every Tuesday Via zoom. They also offer free virtual classes to foster parents as well. You can find a link to their website here.