Support for Foster
Parents and Kids
Ways to help children and families in New Hanover County
BY CHRISTINE R. GONZALEZ MAY is National Foster Care Month and a good time to learn ways
the community can support children in emergency situations and
the families that bring stability in a time of turmoil.
There are more than 300 children and youth currently in the
custody of the New Hanover County Department of Social Services. The DSS has
around 85 licensed foster homes.
There are several ways residents can help, including donating to the Foster
Pantry and the Christmas Fund for children, and becoming a foster parent.
“Basically, the Foster Pantry collects donations,” says Alice Moore, supervi-sor
with the DSS Child Placement Unit. “We have foster parents who get a child
placement in the middle
of the night. They will
call the pantry and say,
‘I need diapers, clothes
for a boy size 2T, etc.’
It’s a Wilmington non-profit,
not through Child
The Foster Pantry
website shows ways
to become a volunteer
and how to donate.
Moore says the public
can also donate directly
to the Foster Children
Christmas Fund through
New Hanover County
There are several ways to support the hundreds
of children currently in the custody of the New
Hanover County Department of Social Services.
is always looking for
more foster families. A special need is for families willing to take older children
or sibling groups.
Licensed social workers conduct the foster parenting classes virtually. The
30-hour course is held two nights a week for five weeks. Prospective foster
parents engage in a virtual home visit or pre-screening before attending the
DSS offers fostering classes four times per year. The next class starts in June.
Interested people can contact Alice Moore at firstname.lastname@example.org or office
Moore says the county’s foster families have continued to meet needs during
“They have taken in kids in the middle of the night and on weekends,” she says.
“Foster parents know that social workers don’t always have time during a situation
to get details of what a child has been through, but they (foster families) have not
let us down. They have stepped up during COVID and done an excellent job.”
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