Some of your most special memories growing up might include making macaroni necklaces and hand-painted cards for mom on Mother’s Day. But imagine for a moment if there had been no mom in your life to celebrate; no nurturing figure to tuck you in at night or offer warm hugs after a bad day. Many children in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Child Protection Services (CPS) are in desperate need of someone to celebrate and be grateful for, and that someone could be you.

Canopy Children’s Solutions (Canopy) seeks families wanting to make a difference in the lives of children. Youth in foster care are often shuffled in and out of group homes and care facilities every few months without the ability to develop long-term connections. These connections are essential to establishing a sense of self-worth, love and security that children need to grow and thrive.

Canopy is hosting an informational meeting for individuals and families interested in learning more about therapeutic foster care (TFC). The meeting will be held on Tuesday, May 8, 2018, at 6:00 p.m. at the Canopy office located at 105 Asbury Circle, Suite A, Hattiesburg.

Canopy believes that all children deserve to grow up in nurturing, stable families. When children are placed into foster care, it is often due to circumstances involving abuse, neglect and/or exploitation.  Following such traumatic events, children need individuals or families to provide loving reassurance in the comfort of a temporary safe haven.

“Mother’s Day can be very difficult for children in foster care who don’t have a place to ‘belong,’ especially if they don’t understand their separation,” said Elliott Brown Therapeutic Foster Care Program Supervisor.

“We receive calls nearly every day hoping to place a child into our program. It is heartbreaking to have to turn them down because we simply don’t have homes to place these children in.”

Canopy’s TFC Program specializes in the care of foster children with emotional, developmental and medical needs. When children are enrolled in the program, they receive interventions that are designed to address their individualized needs in the most comprehensive manner possible. Canopy’s TFC staff not only provide direct support to foster children through individual and family therapy, but also to resource families through ongoing training.

Ultimately, the TFC Program is looking for compassionate and dedicated resource parents who are willing to provide much-needed care to foster children with therapeutic needs. Fostering is an opportunity to draw upon one’s own compassion, generosity and wisdom to help another person in need. These children need to be reminded there is love and compassion in the world; they need to know there is hope, and it can start with you.

For more information about therapeutic foster care, please contact Elliott Brown at 601-606-0208 or elliott.brown@mycanopy.org or visit mycanopy.org.