Picture a child fleeing bombing. She leaves her home behind. Her school is destroyed. Her only hope is that she and her family will escape safely. However, in the refugee camp she discovers both her parents have been killed. She is vulnerable with a very uncertain future. How can we help?
There are 84 million people who cannot live at home anymore. 35 million of those are children according to the UNHCR. Families and children have to flee their native home as a result of political conflicts, persecution and natural disasters. Through these horrific experiences, many are left without a home or a family. Having watched their family members killed, country destroyed and their lives torn apart, they often feel hopelessness and despair from the trauma and loss.
Refugee children are the most vulnerable—and very close to Jesus’ heart. After fleeing their homes, these children wait in refugee camps, without proper nutrition, education or care. They daily hope for foster families to extend a safe, loving home to them.
As the tide of catastrophes increases throughout the world, the need for homes is continuously on the rise. Would you explore the possibility of becoming a refugee foster care parent?
Refugee children need families who can provide new hope and meaning to their lives. If you love children and understand God’s call in James 1:27a, “Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble...”, you may be just the right to become a refugee foster parent. First, it takes a willing, open heart!
The next step is to pray seriously about it. Ask God to show you His will—and He will! Though it will alter your life and family forever, it can be a rich, rewarding experience.
Then, contact an agency that will walk you through the process. The refugee children remain in refugee camps in countries across the world until a family has been identified for them. So you need to let an agency in your state know you are open and willing soon!
Next you fill out the paperwork and go through the simple process of applying. When approved, the U.S. government provides healthcare and a monthly subsidy for your child until they turn 18 years of age. This ministry will not be a financial strain on your family. You, the foster family, only pay for small processing fees, such as for getting your fingerprints report.
Before you know it, you will be waiting excitedly at the airport to welcome your new precious child to your family!
When you participate in traditional foster care here in America, reunification with the biological parents is the key. Foster children will often come and go. With refugee foster care, your home is their forever home. It is a beautiful, secure relationship for life similar to international adoption but without the exorbitant fees!
PLEASE NOTE: For states in which there are no refugee foster care services, interested individuals can still participate through donation contributions. If you do not feel called to parent a refugee child, you can still make an impact on a life through becoming a refugee child mentor, offering an hour a week to tutor a refugee child, or volunteer with other efforts to support the program.
Children can come from refugee camps all over the world. Currently, the largest referral refugee groups are children and youth from Eritrea, Burma, The Democratic Republic of Congo, Honduras, Somalia, Guatemala, Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Nepal