Focus on the Family is bringing its Wait No More Conference to South Florida to help find families for Florida’s waiting kids. The event is being held on Saturday, June 3rd from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Community Christian Church, located at 10001 W. Commercial Blvd. in Tamarac, as an opportunity for people to hear from government, church and community leaders concerning the foster care crisis and ways you can get involved.
If you have ever considered foster care or adoption, or just want to learn how to support an adoptive family, you won’t want to miss this event. You’ll hear more about the kids who are waiting, the steps in the adoption process and have the opportunity to connect with local adoption agencies.
According to Dr. Sharen Ford, program director of Adoption & Orphan Care Community Outreach for Focus on the Family, Florida has about 1,000 kids in foster care waiting for families. The numbers are even more staggering on a national level with 135,000 kids every year in America waiting for a home.
Imagine what life would be like without a family. There would be no one to help with homework, no one to attend sporting events or recitals, no place to go for the holidays.
Focus on the Family President Jim Daly knows what it feels like to be an orphan. After his mother died and his step-father walked out, he and his siblings were left alone during his 4th grade year. Initially spending hours alone and in tears, Daly shares how he learned firsthand that God is the Father to the fatherless.
And today Focus on the Family is on a mission to elevate the issue of orphan care, foster care and mentoring as a way to honor the Lord.
God’s word makes it clear in James 1:27 where it states, “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress…”
Daly claims God is stirring the hearts of His people to welcome these children and youth into forever homes.
With more than 16,000 churches in Florida and over 300,000 churches across American, with families who can change these kids’ lives, the problem could be solved if a family in each church took one child. It is his hope that the church will demonstrate the love of Christ by caring for the least of these.
That’s why they’re collaborating with adoption agencies, church leaders, and ministry partners to raise awareness of and recruit families for those waiting for permanent families.
To date, more than 3,400 families have initiated the process of adoption from foster care as a result of the collaborative efforts of Wait No More, according to their program materials.
Bill Davis, associate pastor of Community Christian Church, said, “We currently have several foster families in the church, so we’re excited about the opportunity to host this event. It’s a simple way to be a party of it by simply opening our doors.”
Davis said they plan to promote the event within their church and encourage others churches to do so as well.
“I know not everyone can be a foster parent, but if you can’t, you could provide respite care, mentor or serve others who are able to take in a child,” Davis added.
In the scriptures, we are encourage to “speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves…” (Proverbs 31:8a NIV).
During National Foster Care Month in May, Focus on the Family is also challenging people to participate in a Foster Care Prayer Vigil for children and youth living in foster care nationwide. They urge you to commit time to pray for these precious lives throughout the month.
The vigil isn’t about candles or staying up late for a special event. It’s about concentrated, heartfelt prayer petitioning God to move in our world.
They’ve prepared a prayer guide with prayer points you can pray for 24 groups of people in your community who are impacted by the foster care crisis. These include the children, their biological families and foster parents, churches, child welfare professionals, teachers, law enforcement officers and judges, elected officials, foster care advocates and more. You can pray daily or weekly, as an individual or in a group setting.
To download your free guide, visit icareaboutorphans.org/fostercareprayervigil/
To find out more about the Wait No More event, visit icareaboutorphans.org/florida/