The Montgomery Bar Association’s Women in the Law Committee is working with the Montgomery County Office of Children and Youth to help area foster kids start the next school year off right.
The committee is hosting a school supply drive through Aug. 12, and all donations will be distributed to locally placed foster children.
"[The Women in the Law Committee] just launched the drive this year," said Jack Costello, marketing manager for the Montgomery Bar Association. "They wanted to do something for foster children in Montgomery County, so for the next month into Aug. 12, they're collecting new book bags and new school supplies for foster kids who are students."
Anyone wishing to donate new school supplies can drop them off at the Montgomery Bar Association at 100 W. Airy St. between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., Monday through Friday.
New book bags would be especially appreciated, but any supplies would be welcome.
"They're really emphasizing the book bags," said Costello. "That's one of the most expensive items. Really, anything is appreciated."
Organizations interested in joining MBA’s efforts should contact them at 610-279-9660. Go to montgomerybar.org for more information.
Foster care affects thousands of children and families in our region. Child welfare issues arise in families of every race, ethnicity, culture, income and age group.
"We have about 340 children in foster care right now," said Michele Kristofco, a community relations officer for the Office of Children and Youth.
Children and youth are placed in foster care when their parents (or guardians) are no longer able to ensure their wellbeing. According to the Office of Children and Youth, these young people need stable, loving care until they can either safely reunite with their families or establish other lifelong relationships with a nurturing adult.
Even more than school supplies, children in the county's foster care system need more families and individuals to become foster parents.
"We are really in need of additional foster families," said Kristofco. "We're always looking for families to open up their homes."
If you are interested in becoming a foster parent, you can find more information about the program on the Office of Children and Youth website, or call foster parent recruiter Bill Carroll at 610-278-5800.
"It's a hard job," said said Kristofco, "but a very rewarding one."