Forever Families’ Foster Care Programs serve children between the ages of 0 and 17 who have entered into the foster care system typically for reasons of abuse and/or neglect. The foster care programs of Forever Families include General Foster Care. The needs of the children vary greatly based on their own unique set of circumstances, experiences and level of functioning.
Forever Families seeks foster families who can provide a home for one to three children. In some cases, the child may return to their parents or to a relative after their initial placement in foster care. In other cases, the foster families may care for the children until the child can live independently. Although the legal jurisdiction over most foster children ends on their 18th birthday, Forever Families is seeking families who can establish a bond with their foster child that will last a lifetime.
Forever Families is looking for families who can share their lives with a young child and help them grow into healthy and productive members of society. Forever Families needs homes from a variety of ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Foster parents can be single or married and of any gender, race or ethnicity.
Being a Member of the Team
Forever Families foster parents are important members of the foster care team for each child. To assist foster parents in fulfilling this role, Forever Families will provide training and support services, including for example, regular meetings with the case worker and monthly foster parent support group meetings. Forever Families needs foster parents who want to be full team members and who welcome frequent agency contact.
Forever Families is a licensed non-profit adoption agency in the State of Michigan. We work with the Department of Human Services as one of its contractors, along with other agencies in this State to provide Foster Care and Adoption Services for the children in the State of Michigan who become Permanent Court Wards.
Our license allows us to perform foster care and adoption services throughout the entire State of Michigan. Our experienced staff is available to you 24 hours a day 7 days a week for urgent care or should an issue arise that you need agency assistance.
CHARACTERISTICS OF ADULTS MOST LIKELY TO SUCCEED WITH FOSTER CHILDREN
They can tolerate verbal hostility and can respond in ways that help de-escalate the youth’s anger.
They have resolved their own separation from their parents constructively.
They accept themselves and do not need to expect the child to fulfill their unmet needs.
They have comfortable adult relationships and are accepting of the child’s need to have comfortable peer relationships. They do not expect the child to provide them with conversation, and companionship.
They feel self-confident so that they can tolerate being left out, being left behind, or living with choices that the child may make that may cause them embarrassment.
They understand issues such as reluctance to trust, mood swings and anti-adult feelings.
They understand the difference between tolerating and accepting versus enabling and approving.
They believe that growing and learning is a lifetime process and that no one is “locked in” until death.
They enjoy and see potential in children practicing and experimenting and participating in fads.
They accept birth parents, previous foster parents or other individuals important to the child and do not demand an exclusive relationship with the child.
They recognize that old patterns may cause some children to leave relationships in difficult ways and they can allow the child to approach them even after a difficult separation.
They are able to ask, “What is the motivation behind this behavior?” and can respond to the underlying motives as well as the obvious behaviors.
WHY WE THINK WE WILL MAKE GOOD PARENTS: Together our promise to you is that we will provide unconditional love, support, strength, and a nurturing home as parents. Individually the characteristics that make us good parents are as follows. Vanessa is compassionate, understanding, intelligent, and extremely loving; while Brian is creative, funny, energetic, and adventurous.
VALUES WE PLAN TO SHARE/TEACH A CHILD: The most important value we would instill in our child is the importance of family. We would also love to share the values of education, kindness, respect, setting goals to achieve, and to live life to the fullest.
THE PEOPLE/PETS/THINGS THAT MAKE UP OUR FAMILY: Our immediate family consists of Vanessa and Brian (Us). In addition we have a furry friend named Mia, a loving dog who we rescued as a puppy. However, family means so much to us- including our parents, our siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents, and lots of lifelong friends. All of us are eagerly waiting to welcome a baby into our family.
THINGS OUR FAMILY CELEBRATES: Where do we start? Celebrations play an important role in our family’s daily life. We love holidays (Christmas, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Easter, etc.) but we also celebrate anniversaries, birthdays, graduations, weddings, new babies, family accomplishments, and even a random family dinner here and there.
RELIGION/SPIRITUAL BELIEFS: While we would encourage them to be open-minded and follow their own religious or spiritual journey, we still plan on raising them in the Catholic religion. We believe this path instills great values, the importance and power of prayer, and maintains a strong family dynamic.
THINGS WE LIKE TO DO (ACTIVITIES/HOBBIES): We can’t wait to share our love of traveling, nature walks, camping, playing games, movies, puzzles, reading, music, going to local events, live theater, and spending lots of time with family and friends. We’re always looking for something new to try.
OUR ETHNIC BACKGROUND (WHERE OUR FAMILY CAME FROM): We have a diverse ethnic background, consisting of Italian, Irish, French Canadian, German, English, and Native American.
WHERE WE LIVE (HOME & NEIGHBORHOOD): We live in a ranch home in Canton, Michigan. Our neighborhood is full of kids and young families. We know all of our neighbors and everyone looks out for each other. The safety and close proximity to schools and parks makes it a wonderful place to raise a family. We live less than 6 miles from both of our parents and visit them often.
ONE THING WE WOULD LIKE THE BIRTH FAMILY TO KNOW MOST ABOUT US: We appreciate the gift of life and when given challenges we have a solid support system to overcome any obstacle. We love life, it is as simple as that.
We think we will be good parents because we consider ourselves to be good parents. We have a 10 year old daughter and 8 year old son that are happy, well taken care of, and always know that they are loved. We are always trying to think of new things to introduce our children to to find out what they would like most (e.g. hockey, guitar, cub scouts, etc.) and we are always involving them in new fun experiences (camping, four wheeling, archery, arts and crafts). Our children are kind, respectful, and have sensitive hearts. We are very family oriented and committed to raising our children in a healthy, loving environment. We are lucky enough to be financially stable and able to provide well for our children. Our jobs allow us the flexibility to be involved in our children’s lives. Barb volunteers at their school on a regular basis and Dave has been able to coach several of their activities such as baseball, softball, and hockey. We have a lot of love to give a child and believe that our children will be wonderful, doting, older siblings.
VALUES WE PLAN TO SHARE/TEACH A CHILD:
We have raised our children to value their family and their faith. We want them to be kind to others and helpful. We want them to know the importance of being responsible and to think of how their actions will affect others. We want them to have pride in themselves and know the importance of honesty and hard work. We stress the belief of “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
THE PEOPLE/PETS/THINGS THAT MAKE UP OUR FAMILY:
Our family consists of Dave, Barb, our daughter Lauren, our son David, our dog Sable, and our cats, Edmund and Oreo.
THINGS OUR FAMILY CELEBRATES:
We love to celebrate holidays and occasions. Christmas is our biggest holiday and our biggest reason to make long trips to visit extended family. We love Halloween too with all its spookiness and fun activities. We love decorating our house for the holidays and engaging in whatever fun activity is related to the holiday. For example, around Halloween we go to haunted trails, haunted houses, pumpkin picking, corn mazes, and Halloween camping weekends. We make a big deal out of birthdays as well. We celebrate our accomplishments as well either attending banquets for sports or going out to dinner to celebrate an award or a job well done.
Dave was raised Lutheran and Barb was raised Catholic. We are raising the children in the Catholic faith and they attend Catholic school. We see ourselves more as Christian than Catholic per se. We believe in God and Jesus and are very spiritual without being strictly religious. Our faith is strong but we are not very strict about following religious policy. We pray daily and say grace when we eat at the table.
THINGS WE LIKE TO DO (ACTIVITIES/HOBBIES):
We love the outdoors. We love to camp, hike, swim, and ride four wheelers. Dave loves to hunt and fish. Barb loves art and her interests include stained glass making and watercolor painting. The kids have various interests. Lauren loves to ice skate, play softball, play on the computer, and get together with friends. Lauren loves music, singing, and dancing. Davey loves baseball, hockey and Pokémon. He also loves to sing. As a family we enjoy getting together with friends and involving ourselves in local events such as fundraisers.
OUR ETHNIC BACKGROUND (WHERE OUR FAMILY CAME FROM):
Dave’s family is full German; Barb’s family is a mix of several ethnicities to include German, English, Irish, Czechoslovakian and Polish. Dave’s family of origin has been settled in the Western end of the Upper Peninsula for the past 40 years, in a small town called Ironwood, bordering Wisconsin. Barb’s family of origin has been located in the Detroit area for approximately 50 years or so.
WHERE WE LIVE (HOME AND NEIGHBORHOOD):
We live in the city of Sault Ste. Marie in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. It is a very old city and is popular for the Soo Locks. We are surrounded by nature, with forests and lakes close by. We live in a three bedroom, two story brick Dutch colonial home that is about 100 years old. There is a nursery off of our main bedroom where the baby will sleep until he or she is old enough to share a room with one of their siblings. We love where we live but hope to eventually live on the water. Our town is small and we live only a few blocks from the Soo Locks and the downtown area. We are very much small town America. The kids go to school two blocks from our house and Dave and Barb both work two miles from their house. The tourist shops are only a couple blocks away so we have fun playing tourists and visiting the gift shops and eating ice cream and fudge!
ONE THING WE WOULD LIKE THE BIRTH FAMILY TO KNOW MOST ABOUT US:
We love to have fun! As much as we love to stay at home, snuggle and watch movies, we are much more likely to be out and about attending various activities and events to try new things and see new places. We love to travel and hope to have our children see a good deal of this world before they are adults. We love the thought of adding to our family so that family celebrations are bigger and that our children have a greater sense of connectedness. Please know that any child brought into our family will be loved extensively and that our children’s happiness is always our top priority. Thank you for considering our family, Dave and Barb Weber
WHY WE WILL MAKE GOOD PARENTS: We absolutely will make great parents! We understand that kids need love, guidance and great role models to thrive as happy and well-adjusted children. As a married couple, we have a loving relationship with a solid foundation. We are able to provide unconditional love along with a safe and stable home. Our children will experience affection, kindness and patience. We will also remember to indulge our children in daily hugs and kisses!
VALUES WE PLAN TO SHARE/TEACH A CHILD: Our children will learn the importance of respecting themselves and others at an early age. We will teach our children to be proud of their choices, to have empathy for others, to have high self-esteem, and posses a kind and giving nature. We will instill within them a strong moral compass and knowing right from wrong.
THE PEOPLE/PETS/THINGS THAT MAKE UP OUR FAMILY: Our family is spread out over the United States. Nearest to us are Molly’s parents and brother. They live just 2 miles away and we see them often. We frequently enjoy Sunday dinner and game nights. Rob’s parents live in Alabama and we visit them several times throughout the year, usually for Thanksgiving or Christmas. They often travel to Michigan to see us in the summer. We have brothers and sisters who live in Pennsylvania, Texas and Florida. We have 13 nieces and nephews between the two of us! We consider our friends an extension to our family and it is important for us to stay in touch and connected.
At home, we have a rescued greyhound named Henry. He’s a wonderful pet; very calm and relaxed! He loves kids, going on walks, getting treats and is always looking for a belly rub!
THINGS OUR FAMILY CELEBRATE: Our family celebrates hard work and success. We recognize accomplishments and learn from mistakes.
We celebrate major holidays too! Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, Memorial Day, and Labor Day are holidays in which we remember history. Honoring the Military is quite important to us. Both of our dads served in the Army for many years and recognizing service men and women is particularly meaningful. Birthdays are a special occasion as well – complete with cake, ice cream, and lots of love.
RELIGION/SPIRITUAL BELIEFS: Molly was raised with Methodist values and Rob with Baptist values. We are both Protestant and believe in living live peacefully and in a way that makes you happy. We plan to instill in our children the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
THINGS WE LIKE TO DO (ACTIVITIES/HOBBIES): We spend a lot of time together just laughing. We can laugh anywhere! We’ve laughed in places like Aruba, Mackinac Island and Key West! We have enjoyed so many adventures: swimming with dolphins, exploring historic forts, and conquering the scariest roller coaster at Cedar Point! We’ve laughed while feeding stingrays, riding wave-runners and just relaxing beachside.
Together, we also enjoy going to baseball games, playing tennis, riding bikes, cooking, going to Broadway musicals, and seeing the occasional movie.
Rob’s hobbies include home improvement projects, bowling and gardening. Molly likes to read, write, bake, and decorate (and re-decorate!)
We plan to share our love of laughter, excitement and exploration with our children.
OUR ETHNIC BACKGROUND (WHERE OUR FAMILY CAME FROM): Molly’s heritage is of English, Irish, Scot, Czech and German decent. Her parents and grandparents were born and raised in Iowa and are true Midwesterners. Rob’s heritage is of German, Irish, and Native American decent. His parents and extended family live in Alabama and Mississippi and are Southerners.
WHERE WE LIVE (HOME & NEIGHBORHOOD): Our neighborhood is a quiet and friendly place to raise a family. We know all our neighbors by name and there are always kids playing outside. We are close to family, playgrounds, bike paths, schools, shopping, the local recreation center and a hospital.
WHAT WE WOULD LIKE THE BIRTH FAMILY TO KNOW MOST ABOUT US: We want the birth family to know that we are excited to begin our journey as parents.
We LOVE children: the smile on their face when they are happy, their laugh when they think something is funny, the tears they shed when they need comfort, and their curiosity when asking a million questions.
It is important to us that the birth family know that we will forever carry them in our hearts and in the heart of our child.
To learn even more about us, visit our website at www.robandmollytoadopt.weebly.com
For kids living with a challenging adopted sibling. Call Helen Kaplan at Attachment COALITION for details 734-707-9131
Call Helen Kaplan at Attachment COALITION for details 734-707-9131
Why we think we will make good parents: We have so much love for one another, and we are more than ready to share it with a child. We would appreciate and love our child so much, all while teaching him or her to be a respectful and caring person.
Values we plan to share with our child: We are strong believers in the importance of good manners and respect for others. Our child will learn to be humble and thankful for the good things in his or her life. We also highly value hard work, a good education and respect for the environment.
The people that make up our family: Andy and I are the only two in our household. Katy has a mom and a dad, two older brothers and two younger sisters. One of her older brothers has three young children. Andy has a mom and a dad, an older brother and an older sister. His brother has three children and his sister has one child.
What we celebrate: We love to celebrate holidays with our families. We get together for Thanksgiving, Easter, Christmas, the 4th of July, and all birthdays. We also enjoy just getting together and enjoying each others’ company.
Our religious and spiritual beliefs: We were both raised Catholic and continue to follow Christian principles like compassion, charity, kindness and generosity.
Our activities and hobbies: Katy loves to play volleyball and softball, read, draw and work on home decoration projects. Andy enjoys fly-fishing, camping, hiking, reading and playing his guitar. Together we love to watch Tigers baseball, try new foods, travel, and just hang out.
Our ethnic background: We are both Caucasian, of mixed European descent.
Where we live: We live in a cozy house with a big backyard in a friendly neighborhood. Our subdivision is within walking distance of several parks and a fun downtown area. We love our town because it’s not too big but not too small, there’s always something interesting going on, and the people who live here are very diverse.
One thing we would most like the birth family to know about us: We think it’s important that the birth family know how deeply our lives have been touched by adoption. All of Katy’s siblings were adopted, as was our beautiful niece. We understand that a loving family is a loving family, regardless of how it is made.
Why We Think We Will Make Good Parents: First and foremost, we just love children of all ages. We love to mentor, teach, guide and nurture. We believe that we have more to give to another child as we are now a family of three and long for another child to complete our family. Most of what we do is centered on creating meaningful experiences and memories for our family that will last a lifetime. We are a family that plays together, learns together, experiences together.
Vales We Plan to Share/Teach a Child:
Faith, Respect and dignity are words that ring true in our home. We believe that our parenting consistency over the years has really shaped our son into a fine young man who knows how to live by the rules of home, school and other situations. Although we are currently both working professionals, Amy will take some time off for several years to be a stay-at-home mom to our children.
The People/Pets/Things that Make Up our Family:
We have been married for 14 years! Our son, Gage, (bio) is a bright, loving and creative eleven year old. We continue to be proud of the boy he’s become and by his kindness and caring for others. We live in a home with our 3 dogs, Jasmine, Diesel and Lucky (lab, dachshund and blue tick healer) and our barn cat, Fiona.
Things our Family Celebrate:
We love the traditions we’ve created around the holidays. We celebrate the Christian holidays along with many of life’s simple pleasures such as a job-well-done, milestones and accomplishments. What’s a celebration without good food and the love of family?! Our celebrations have all of this!
We have a strong Christian faith. Gary was raised in the Catholic Church. Amy was raised in a more non-denominational Christian home and was active in her church youth group through junior high and high school. Amy became Catholic about 15 years ago and we are raising our son in a more relaxed Catholic household. We honor God in our daily lives. Some of our favorite traditions are centered on the Christian holidays of Easter and Christmas. Our values are centered on honoring God and Family. We give generously and comfort others.
Things We Like to Do (Activities/Hobbies):
We share many interests and enjoy doing things as a family, although we do respect each other’s needs to do things on our own from time to time. Some of Amy’s hobbies include gardening, sewing, cooking, and a variety of crafts. Some of Gary’s hobbies are fishing, hunting, sports, computers (a die-hard MAC lover), camping and grilling. Our son loves all things “electronic” including gadgets, video games, computers, RC Cars, writing, art, LEGO’s and sports. We do enjoy traveling as a family and do so regularly to our cottage, but would truly classify ourselves as home-bodies who just like to be home to relax and unwind together.
Our Ethnic Background (Where our Families Came From):
Both our families are of European descent (German, Polish, Hungarian). We are also fortunate to have our extended family of both sets of parents, siblings, nephews and a niece within an easy drive in-state (one brother in Chicago). Gary has one sister who is a newlywed and Amy has 4 siblings with 6 nephews and 1 niece. Gary is firstborn while Amy is #4 of 5! Amy’s younger brother is 12 years her junior and she has great memories of being an active part of his upbringing. With so many siblings, nephews and a niece, there are many family gatherings with kids running around and lots of food and good times. Both sets of parents love being grandparents and are excited to become grandparents again through our adoption journey.
Where We Live (Home & Neighborhood):
We live in a spacious 4 bedroom colonial/ranch style home situated on 5 country acres, surrounded by hundreds of acres of farm land. Our property has lots of wildlife including pheasants, deer, bunnies, etc. We also have a large barn that will someday house our future pet chickens and goats! Our neighboring homes within ¼ mile in each direction are all great families. We also have a second home, our cottage, in northern MI about a 3-hour drive from home. Our cottage is a 3 bedroom 1 bath summer and winter retreat. There our neighbors are close by and we all enjoy the water sports, campfires and cookouts most weekends May through August! Our school district is phenomenal. We have a small school of about 1500 students K-12 where the kids flourish and receive a lot of attention. There are numerous parks, lakes, community centers, shopping areas and eateries within a 10 mile drive from our home.
One Thing We Would Like the Birth Family to Know Most About Us:
We believe that God has placed birth families on this journey just as He has placed us on the other side of it, for a reason. As we envision our future with another child, we’d be humbled to embark upon an open-adoption arrangement if you so desire. We want to make this a transition that you can look back on with confidence that the right family is holding your baby, loving him/her, caring for him/her in the way that you dream for them. Thank you for making this amazing and selfless decision for your child. If we sound like your family of choice, let’s talk!