By Julie Steiner
April 18, 2007
I have lived in Ketchikan almost all of my life - this is the
place I call home. But there are some "problems" that
I have had lately in the community. Let me explain a little more.
My fiance and I have a total of 9 kids in our house- yes, 9.
You read the number right. I have 2 boys of my own, and my fiance
has 3 kids. On top of that, we do foster care for the State of
Alaska. And right now, we have 4 kids in foster care. And we
love it...... We enjoy helping these kids out who need it. These
kids need a family - and a safe place to be. That is what we
are here for.
Unfortunely, with this many kids, it takes a lot of money to
go do something: for example, roller- skating or swimming, or
even going out to eat dinner. It might seem like an inexpensive
"family activity", right - but not when you are going
with a family of 11.
The problem I have had - recently -is that whenever we ask for
a "family-rate" at the swimming pool, or the skating
rink, they tell us that foster kids do not count as a family!
What kind of deal is that? So - you are saying that even though
we take in foster kids - treat them as our own - and make them
part of our family, that they are "not considered family?"
I dont get it? What is the difference? Come on! That is just
a total cop-out! I will say - that the Rec Center has graciously
agreed to give us the family rate for our household. Our kids
go skating every single Saturday night - without fail and we
all have a great time. I can understand that a lot of people
try to pay for all their friends under the family rate - so I
see why they are careful. But please dont tell the kids that
"your not a family - you dont even have the same skin color."
THAT IS WRONG! Shame on you for saying that to these kids. Yes
- this happened to our kids about a month ago. That was when
and took care of it.
On the other hand, I wanted to get a monthly pool pass for the
kids to go swimming once a week - maybe twice - and they told
me that once again, foster kids do not count. WOW! Again - that
is just horrible to say - and this has been said before in front
of the foster kids. Imagine how they feel when they are being
told that they are not counted "as a family."
I sure hope that other families dont have to go through this
like we have. It's sad - and wrong. I dont even know how to explain
it - but that is such a horrible thing to do! Just remember -
foster kids are people too - and they are trying to belong just
as you and me.
Think about it!
Received April 18, 2007 - Published April 18, 2007
About: "Local Resident,
Foster Parent and Business Owner."
Note: Comments published
on Viewpoints are the opinions of the writer
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.
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