November 12 is Orphan Sunday. We asked Sandy Davenport about her work with Catholic Charities and DHS as she cares for our keiki. Thanks so much, Sandy, for all you do!
What work do you do with Catholic Charities?
Catholic Charities is a Service Provider that completes the required Home Studies for a family that is open to having their home licensed for foster care or to be a resource home. They also have a contract with DHS/CWS where they provide services such as Parenting classes, Counseling Services for parents that are working with Family Court.
What motivated you to go into social work?
I wanted to become a part of the solution and help to make a positive difference.
What are the current needs in Kona?
We need more Foster/Resource homes. For all ages! We have a great need for homes that are able to accommodate teenagers, sibling groups and children that have unique needs.
What is the most rewarding part of your work?
If a family has been reunified and I am lucky enough to see them out in the community, one of my most favorite moments is when the kids or parents approach me to share how they are doing. Basically, I just love seeing the children thriving and moving past their situation and moving forward for their future.
Tell us the impact one foster family can have on this community?
One Foster/Resource family can change the world for any child. With an open mind, patience and a lot of love a difference can happen. I have such a huge respect for our families that have been licensed, welcoming a new person in their home and showing them unconditional love and support. Helping those that have been placed in their home how to follow directions, love and respect themselves, how to keep their room clean, get their homework done, how to share and forgive. A Foster/Caregiver is all of that and more!
What does it take to get involved in foster care?
The family must want to make a difference and have the space for another child in their home. It could be a relative type situation or a General Licensed type situation where families open their homes up to perhaps a child they do not know and commitment. At this point, we are in between “recruiters” so, if anyone is interested, they can call our DHS/CWS front office desk 808-327-4787 and ask to speak with me and I will help get them started on our BINTI website to initiate their application.