Foster care children feel the effects of COVID-19

Foster care children feel the effects of COVID-19

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - As the world continues to feel the effects of COVID-19, the effect of the virus is being felt in extreme ways by vulnerable children and families.

Like many of us, the concern is not only for foster children's physical health and safety but for their mental health too.

The stay-at-home order is forcing children to be stuck inside and be separated from their communities.

According to the Foster and Adoptive Council of Tucson, that's especially hard for kids who've already experienced a great amount of change in their lives.

Without face-to-face contact, foster care workers are now getting creative to stay connected.

Mentors and recruiters are using technology like Zoom and FaceTime to keep up with kids' visits with their biological parents.

Kids usually get two hours of visit time a few times a week, but now it’s down to only 10-15 minutes.

For children who’ve been abused or abandoned, dealing with layers of past trauma, they're missing out on therapies and groups they normally take part in.

Not to mention, with all kids at home instead of school, foster families and group homes are trying to balance the work and find resources for the number of kids in their household.

"Schooling has been a hard thing. Getting enough Chromebooks or laptops for a household that has more than one child can be pretty difficult. So we've been trying to see what we can do,” Beth Sierra, Chair of the Foster and Adoptive Council of Tucson, said.

Luckily, FACT was able to purchase 20 Chromebooks for group homes to conduct virtual visits with their parents and to help with their school work.

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