On any given day, nearly 3,500 children are in the Nebraska foster care system. Through no fault of their own, many of these children have experienced abuse, neglect or other family challenges and have been removed from their homes by the courts for their safety. Relatives, non-related kin and foster families provide care and support for these children while they are in out-of-home care.
Foster care is a safe place that gives a child and his or her birth family an opportunity to resolve conflicts or disruptions and learn healthy skills so the child can safely return home. Many birth families need help in learning effective parenting skills, overcoming substance use or learning healthy ways to cope with the trauma they themselves have experienced.
Nearly 60% of children who enter foster care in Nebraska are safely reunited with their birth families. If a child cannot be safely reunited with his or her birth family, the goal becomes to find a permanent home for the child through adoption, relative placement, custodianship (guardianship) or, for older youth, independent living.
At KVC, one of our core services is recruiting, training, licensing and supporting foster families to care for children ages birth to 18 (the greatest needs are for youth age 13 and older). These families offer the essential stability each child needs by providing a home, food, clothing, education, access to medical care, supervision and transportation, support, nurturing and guidance. Foster families also play an important role in helping each child achieve safe and timely permanency. KVC staff are on call 24/7 to offer support, advice and crisis intervention to foster parents who open their homes to children and youth in need.