Debunking the Myths About Foster Parenting in Talbot County

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Pictured back row are Jayden Carter and her foster and adoptive parent Glenda Dawson. Seated front row are her other adopted children, left to right, Jeremiah and Jayla Carter.

Talbot County does not have enough foster parent resource homes to accommodate the number of children in need of emergency placement due to unexpected family circumstances. Often, people think there are too many roadblocks to becoming a foster parent and don’t pursue the training and screening necessary to be licensed. Some of the myths surrounding becoming a foster parent are that you need to be married or be a two-parent family; you need to own your own home; you need to have a high income; and you need to have separate bedrooms in your home.

Brandon and Susan Angell with their son Nicholas Angell, along with Paris Quillet, Special Projects Coordinator with the Talbot County Department of Social Services.

According to Paris Quillet, Special Projects Coordinator with the Talbot County Department of Social Services, “Many of these myths keep people from coming to our information sessions to learn more about becoming a foster or adoptive parent. We have foster parents of all races and ethnicities, all religious beliefs, and all sexual orientations. They live in million dollar homes and they live in subsidized housing.”

Glenda Dawson of Easton has been a foster parent for 12 years with the Talbot County Department of Social Services. After raising her own family of four children as a single parent, working two jobs to pay her rent, she discovered Habitat for Humanity and was able to finally purchase her own home. Dawson, who had more love to give, was then licensed as a foster mother to care for her two great nieces and one great nephew. Eventually, through a kinship adoption, she was able to adopt all three children. She continues to provide respite and foster care for the children of Talbot County.

She recalls, “I did this for the love of family and the importance of keeping these children all together as a family.”

She adds, “You just go step by step. If it’s something you really want to do, you go for it. I am proud of what I have accomplished with these children in providing them with a safe and stable home.”

According to Dawson, the support of her extended family and the Department of Social Services has enabled her to manage her second family while continuing to work. Family members help with respite care when she needs a break and the Department helps provide what Dawson needs for the children when things come up. They are also a resource to her for advice and encouragement.

On July 25, 2017 from 5:30 to 7 p.m., the Talbot County Department of Social Services will be hosting an open house for anyone interested in becoming a foster or adoptive parent at its location at 301 Bay Street Unit #5 Easton MD 21601. For further information, call the Talbot County Department of Social Services at 410-820-7371.

 

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