The Forgotten Initiative
A Simple Way to Encourage Foster Children
A note from Sara Stickling:
The Forgotten Initiative (TFI) is a local Christian ministry that launched recently, and reaches out to those in the foster care community. They have done many great things, and one that is starting now is the Birthday Club.
When children are placed into foster care in this area, they now have the chance to sign up to be in the Birthday Club. That means that people like us will send them a birthday card, write them three other times a year, and commit to praying for them. As a foster parent, I have taken classes about and experienced children being taken from their home, from everything they know. How vulnerable. Please consider being the hands and feet of Jesus by writing these children. They need to know that God loves them and that people really do care about them.
Fourteen children have already signed up, and we don’t want to miss their birthdays! TFI asks that 3-5 volunteers volunteer to write to each child our church “adopts.” So far there are three of us willing to do it, so that is only one child. Can we support more? Read the information below if you are interested, and don’t worry about forgetting to write the children because I would be reminding you, and collecting the letters. Please contact me or see me at church if you have questions or want more information.
The Birthday Club
- Children (currently in foster care) join the club, through their local agency
- Agency notifies TFI
- TFI recruits Church Coordinators
- Church Coordinator recruits volunteer authors and praying church family (see volunteer form)
- Church Coordinator mails letters to agency
- Letters are given (by their caseworker) to children on their birthday and three others times per year
- A seemingly small act of service may be life-changing for a child who feels forgotten as well as for the church family who prays and writes the letters!
- Do not include your last name, address or any specific information about yourself or your family.
- Make sure your writing is easy to read.
- Keep your message brief such as…I hope you have a great day! You are special! I’m thinking of you!
- Avoid anything that references the child’s personal situation such as…I hope you are able to spend time with your family.
- Keep the spiritual references light such as…I am praying for you!
- Small gifts that can fit into the envelope are allowed such as… stickers or coloring pages.
- Do not send money or anything that has a monetary value.
- Pictures are permitted, but use discretion. IE) you are dressed appropriately, non-identifying information, not flaunting your lifestyle in them, etc.
- Letters should NOT be sealed before sending so letters can be read if caseworker feels it is necessary. (Although TFI has provided guidelines for the authors, they do not take responsibility for what is written).
- Please send letters in stamped envelopes (so they can easily be mailed to the youth at no direct cost to the agency)
Check these links if you want more info about TFI.