We are having our home inspected today. Oh. My. Gosh. How stressful it is. One of the requirements of opening your home to foster care is to have a fire inspection an health inspection. The fire inspection should not be so bad. We had to get two 5 lb fire extinguishers and mount them (which we should really have any way) and they will make sure the smoke detectors work and all that good ‘ol fire safety stuff. The health inspection is what kind of freaks me out. She will be looking through our entire house to make sure all chemicals inside and outside of the house are put on a high shelf. We can have no expired medication (which we had a TON of) and all medications have to be locked in a safe. Yep. You read that right. If we want to take some advil for a headache, we enter the safe. Oh, and there is a separate safe for topical medications. Sounds silly, huh? Well, when you are caring for a child who belongs to the state, they take safety pretty seriously. It’s really not that big of a deal, and considering we get to care for God’s children, the “burden” is quite small. But wow! I have the cleanest house in town right now. I find myself wanting so badly to impress these people. I want my house to be perfect. That speaks a great deal about where my heart is, I think.
So, while I sit here and wait for the health inspector to come look our house over from top to bottom, I thought I’d share some statistic with you that played a huge part in driving our hearts toward foster care.
- There are about 510,000 children in foster care in the United States
- As of November 2010, there were 1, 719 children in foster care in the city of Austin
- 127,000 children in foster care are waiting to be adopted
- 26,000 children will age out of foster care each year…and this number is growing
- onlyabout 50% of children who age out of the system will earn a high school diploma
- within 2 years of aging out, the majority of foster children become homeless, are incarcerated, become pregnant, or die.
These are just a few of the statistics. You should definitly go and look up your state’s own foster care statistics and become aware of what is happening in your city. I never thought twice about there being orphans in my own city. I would see commercials for orphans across the world from me and my heart would break, but it wasn’t until recently that the Lord broke my heart for the orphans that are most likely living within 10 miles of me. This does not make the inpections and rules seem like anything. I consider it a joy to prepare my home to bring in these sweet children.