SMITH COUNTY, Texas (KLTV) – For families who aren’t in the position to consider adoption or fostering, babysitting certification is one way to lend a big hand during the ongoing foster crisis in Texas.
For many parents, finding a babysitter could be as simple as asking a family member or friend. That’s not the case for parents who take on the responsibility of fostering children in state care.
The state requires anyone looking over a child in foster care to receive specific education before they’re left alone with them as a temporary caretaker.
“You don’t get to send the kids next door so you can run to Brookshire’s to pick up a loaf of bread,” Christi Sowell of The Fostering Collective explained to us in a January 2020 interview. “Taking care of yourself is honestly the first and the very best thing that you can do for your child. So just to give yourself a moment to get in check so you can ‘handle the hard’ is important.”
As an adoptive mom, Sowell stressed the importance of state-certified babysitters after highlighting the fact that nearly half of all foster families quit after the first year. Many cite a lack of available support.
The next training event takes place 8:30 a.m. to noon Saturday, April 2nd at New Beginnings Church in Longview. It costs $10 to attend. A CPR/First Aid certification course will follow for a fee of $45.
You must at least 21 years old to participate.
For more information on how to sign up for The Fostering Collecting April Babysitting training, click here.
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