“We’re so thankful to have a place we can call home and where we can have a family. We didn’t believe about families before we came here. We’re a family now, and you all gave us this gift.”
It is a Village by name but for the foster children and parents who live here, it is simply referred to as home.
The lush green trees almost exceed climbing heights for the children. Almost! Squirrels run, rabbits will hop in to say hello, and the only sound drowning out the birds are the kids... and that is most heartwarming sound of all. And then of course there's the healthy competition on the sports court (funded by Variety – the Children's Charity in August of 2009). The kids are out there at every opportunity. Even in the middle of winter they’ll be out there shooting hoops.
But more than the five beautiful homes and the picturesque setting, the Village represents a unique model of healing. It functions to provide some of the very things that these children have lost. The Village provides a sense of community, connection and belonging, in a system where isolation is all too frequent. This Village shouts to kids in foster care, "You Matter!".
And because of their unique experiences and vulnerabilities, kids living in foster care require consistent opportunities where they are able to experience success. Only then can they feel as though they are worth something; that they belong just as much as any other child. Given the range of special needs among these children, several programs are in place to give them the tools necessary to grow into successful and contributing adults.
As much as we try to be the teachers, we learn from these kids on a daily basis. We witness them working out their differences playing in the yard, communicating EXACTLY what they are feeling, and always willing to give others a second chance.
These kids have expressed to us that their neighbours within the Village are like extended family and many say that even though they are all different, they are all in foster care and can share that with one another.
With your help, we can continue to offer a village of support, both for the children living in the Village and those within our communities.
To support the SOS BC Village, please donate now.
* Please note that due to privacy laws and our desire for SOS foster children to live as normal lives as possible, we do not allow the general public to visit our Village. Additionally, volunteers may not be able to work with the children and youth in our Village.
|Check out fosteringconnections.ca, a public awareness and recruitment site featuring the real and moving stories of foster families around the province of BC, so that prospective foster parents can better understand the challenges, and many rewards, of opening their homes to a child or youth in care.|