Changed Lives !
They need the love and care only a family can give.
In 1995 a referral packet arrived in the CHOSEN mail requesting a foster home for a 16 year old girl named Stephanie. Stephanie was in a therapeutic foster home with another agency and had to be moved due to some changes in the family.
Stephanie had been placed in the foster care system when she was 7 years old. Her history was one of both physical and sexual abuse, as well as neglect. From the time she entered foster care in 1986 until 1995, Stephanie had been in a variety of foster homes and residential placements. Without even realizing it, Stephanie was about to experience something that children in foster care desperately need and crave: stability.
Stephanie entered her CHOSEN home in September of 1995. Stephanie was not your average 16 year old. Stephanie was diagnosed with having Pervasive Developmental Disorder. This diagnosis meant that Stephanie would have difficulties relating to others and was often detached from the world as we know it. Some of her issues included mental retardation, excessive talking to herself, obsessions about television personalities, inappropriate boundaries, isolating herself in her room, inability to carry on a normal conversation, and periodic tantrums.
As Stephanie became part of her CHOSEN family, she grew in many ways. Over the years, the amount of time she spent alone in her room decreased, she became more engaging and became involved in her church. Many of her previous inappropriate obsessions turned into more normal interests and hobbies.
Stephanie's CHOSEN family worked very hard to teach her social and life skills that would help her to overcome some of her disabilities. They provided her with the stability and structure that she always needed. Stephanie began participating in various work/study programs through her school and gained experiences in the food service, housekeeping and hotel custodial fields.
After years with the CHOSEN program, Stephanie was able to move into a supervised independent living apartment. This year she graduated form her high school program and will go on this summer to begin full-time employment. Stephanie will always require supervised living and job coaching, but the foundations provided for her through her years in her CHOSEN home have helped her to blossom in many ways and will always live on with her as she now takes her place as an adult in our society.
Would you consider opening your heart and your home to other children who, like Stephanie, are also in desperate need of the love and stability of a family? While each CHOSEN child is unique in age and profile, they all need the same thing: a loving and supportive home. You, too, can make a difference in the life of a child.
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Children's Services; All rights reserved.
Columbia, Maryland 21046; Telephone: (800) 621-8834
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