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Believe 2017 Builds Bridges of Hope

Contributions from the Believe 2017 Program Sometime life does not work out, due to our own power or not. This is a fact of life. Sometimes that even hold true for children, as unfortunate as that is. Kids can find themselves without homes or guardians to protect them. In these cases, there are people that act as foster parents that are dedicated to making sure that no child has to suffer through a rough time. That is the goal of the Trauma Responsive Community Project and the Troup County Foster Care Collaborative when they recently hosted the Believe 2017 program, with one of the sessions taking place at First Baptist Church on Thursday night, June 22nd. The foster care problem and solutions are summed up by their program below: “We currently have over a hundred children placed in foster care and hundreds more at substantial risk of being removed without community or state intervention. Due to a shortage of Troup County foster homes, approximately 50% of our foster children are placed out-of-county, separating them from all familiar connections-Let’s bring these children home! If you don’t feel called to add to your family, there is still so much you can do. Come learn how you can be a Champion of Hope not only to these children but for all children who have experienced trauma. We will also honor our relative and foster families who have opened their homes and are making a difference in the lives of our most vulnerable children.”

That Thursday night at First Baptist Church on the Square was one of the planned events where people came out for a lecture on the importance of foster care. Judge Michael Key opened the program and gave some background and the statement of purpose before the opening prayer was given by Kim Neese. There was even a performance of the song “Diamonds”, the

Johnnyswim song performed that night by Lindsey Morris and Eric Blackman. The real treat of the night cam form the speech by Sue Badeau.

Sue Badeau is an expert writer and speaker in the field of foster parenting. Badeau and her husband Hector have raised 22 children over the course of their life, two by birth and 20 that they adopted. In addition they have fostered over 50 children and have taken in refugee kids from many other countries. They recently celebrated the birth of their 35th grandchild and their fourth great grandchild. Badeau has won several awards and has been recognized by the former President Clinton with an “Adoption Excellence” award. Sue now travels and speaks on foster parenting around the Country.

There are many dedicated here in Troup County to foster parenting and serving the children of the community. The Believe 2017 community event is a great way to get people involved and to teach people the importance of fostering a child. The legacy of care and comfort for our children should continue to be a priority of everyone in our community for many years to come.