Department of Family Services – Children and Families

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Monday–Friday 8 a.m.–4:30 p.m.

TTY 711

12011 Government Center Parkway, Pennino Building
Fairfax, VA 22035

Oriane Eriksen,

Unit Success Stories: Saying “Yes” Without Hesitation

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The Foster Care and Adoption Resource workers are very fortunate to work with wonderful, heart-centered resource parents who give of themselves to provide the children in their care with healthy, nurturing homes. Although all our resource families do a wonderful job, we would like to highlight the successes one of our resource fathers “Mr. B.” and the relationship he has cultivated with the youth in his care.

Mr. B.’s foster journey began when he and his son realized that they wanted to open their home up to youth, who for whatever reason, needed a resource family to provide, love, support, material goods and supervision. Although Mr. B. was a brand new resource parent, he said, “yes” without hesitation to the placement of a youth with very specific needs.

Placement and Resource Unit collage of memojisIn addition to providing the basic needs that every resource family is asked to provide, Mr. B. worked diligently to communicate with the youth who did not speak much English at the time. Mr. B. did not speak the same language as the youth, so he worked with the youth’s school, his after-school care provider, the youth’s tutor and the youth’s biological family to help him settle into his home and his routine.

Over time, the youth’s English skills blossomed, and the youth invited Mr. B. to experience aspects of his culture. Mr. B. and the youth shop together in specialty grocery stores for foods native to the youth’s home country. They cook special dishes that remind the youth of home and enjoy eating them together. After several months together, the youth has grown accustomed to having a brother and a resource father who respect and embrace his identity and his customs.

In addition to helping the youth to improve his English skills, Ms. B. has worked diligently with him on his other coursework. Because of Mr. B.’s attention to detail, his ability to set specific boundaries with behaviors, and his great communication with the youth in his home, the youth’s daily behaviors have become much more positive. Mr. B. has also used what he has learned to help the youth’s biological family understand effective behavioral modification techniques.

Mr. B. has been a welcome participant at Family Partnership Meetings where he has been able to showcase the youth’s improvements both inside his home and within the community. Mr. B. has worked as an integral part of the youth’s team and has always put the needs of the youth and the youth’s biological family at the forefront. Mr. B. has shown great ability and care as a resource parent, and we hope that he continues as a resource parent for many years to come.

This article is by Dana Wade, of the Placement and Resource Unit.

This article posting is part of the Foster Family News monthly newsletter designed to keep foster parents informed about all the new and notable happenings in Fairfax County.

Learn about what the Foster Care and Adoption program has planned for foster families - stay on top of trends, participate in trainings and learn about policy changes.

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