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Parents needed for foster program
Angel Tatum had to turn away at least five referrals last week from the state Department of Family and Children Services for children in need of a foster home because she didn't have a place to put them.

To avoid incidents like that from happening again, Tatum, director of foster care at Morningstar Children and Family Services, 105 Marsh Drive, Glynn County, is looking to increase its number of foster families, but she needs help from the community to do that.

"I just want to get the parents to meet the need because the need is great," she said.

Morningstar started its foster program six years ago and currently has only four foster homes available to it.

By the end of June, Tatum hopes to increase the number to at least 25.

Increasing the number of available homes the program offers will prove to be a challenge for Tatum, who usually finds herself having to battle misconceptions some people have about foster children.

"The unknown about how a child will treat you, your family, or any other kids that may be in the home are real fears for any adult, even one who's considering become a certified foster parent," said Tatum, who has 15 years of experience working with foster children.

"People will hear the challenges, and it makes them afraid to invest in the children, but if you have a loving heart and care, everything will work out."

Qualifications Tatum looks for in potential foster parents include financial stability. They must have enough income to support a child, no criminal record and no prior negative incidents at another foster agency.

The certification and training process to be become a foster parent can last three to four months.

"We try to train them to manage (any situation)," said Tatum. "It's challenging, but it's rewarding."

While Morningstar is based in Brunswick, it's looking for parents in all surrounding coastal counties.

"We really want to focus on this area, but we're not limited to this area," said Tatum.

SBlt Reporter Martin Rand III covers local news. Contact him at, on Facebook or at 265-8320, ext. 324.

Get involved

Call Angel Tatum, director of foster care at Morningstar Children and Family Services, at 577-8873 to discuss opportunities for becoming a foster parent with the agency.

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