Intensive Foster Care Blog

My Signature

Posted by Courtney Edge-Mattos on Aug 9, 2017 1:44:05 PM

It is the final step for a Home Finder. At the very bottom of the last page, a little black line, about three inches long; your typed name, credentials, and title below. You poise your blue or black pen over the paper and there is always a pause. The weight of the paper is heavy in your hand. You’ve read, re-read, and scrutinized every line. Peers, supervisors, and program directors have reviewed your work. That document, generally fifteen to twenty pages in length, is the weight of months of research. It is hours of time spent in a home that is not your own; opening cabinets, closets, and refrigerators that are not your own; testing smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors; checking for child proofing, cabinet locks for chemicals, and lock boxes for medications. It is the compilation of personal references that you analyze and try to read between the lines, looking for any hint of danger or a red flag. You assess and obsess over the stability and resiliency of the applicant. You hunch over your notes, looking at the family history. Did you represent them honestly, without your own biases or feelings? It is true, fair, and insightful?

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Topics: Foster Care, Adoption, Lifebooks

The Most Frightening Word...

Posted by Courtney Edge-Mattos on Aug 4, 2017 11:57:43 AM

"Teenagers"…Breaths catch, hearts splutter, shoulders stiffen. That single word is one of the most heart-stopping words in the English language. It is the developmental stage every parent nervously jokes about and anxiously anticipates. Couple the adolescent years with the challenges of foster care and you have a fearsome combination…Or do you?

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Topics: Foster Care, Adoption, Lifebooks

Doorsteps and Dishwashers

Posted by Courtney Edge-Mattos on Jul 27, 2017 10:53:10 AM

You enjoy a lovely meal at a friend’s home.  The food was delicious, the conversation delightful.  The host rises to clear the table and you, excellent manners in hand, leap up to help.

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Topics: Foster Care, Adoption, Lifebooks

More Than A Statistic

Posted by Courtney Edge-Mattos on Jun 28, 2017 3:12:02 PM

The numbers are crunched, arranged, and deconstructed. Computers churn out percentages, predictions. They have their place in this world, but they will never tell you your place. The numbers are numbers, but they don’t have all the data. They can’t calculate the unique, glowing being that is YOU.

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Family Strong

Posted by Courtney Edge-Mattos on Jun 21, 2017 3:50:56 PM
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Topics: Foster Care, Adoption, Lifebooks

What is MAPP Class?

Posted by Courtney Edge-Mattos on Jun 12, 2017 4:03:35 PM

MAPP is the Massachusetts Approach to Partnerships in Parenting.  It is a course taught in every foster care and adoption program in Massachusetts and is a pre-requisite for all foster and pre-adoptive parents.  MAPP is a 30 hour course that is, essentially, a crash course in parenting a child who is involved with the child welfare system.  Every state has its own version of the curriculum, so that potential foster and pre-adoptive parents understand the basics. 

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Topics: Foster Care, Adoption, Lifebooks

Fractures and Splints

Posted by Courtney Edge-Mattos on May 23, 2017 3:19:21 PM

A fracture is the cracking or breaking of an object.  It is most commonly associated with bones.  Our children (kids in care) are painfully familiar with fractures, but most often, not in the traditional sense.  For a small percentage of our children, were they put in an MRI machine, one might see the pain they have experienced and be able to know exactly where an injury occurred.  Doctors would have a protocol for how to treat it and would begin to do so immediately. However, for the majority of the children placed in our care, there is no machine to tell the tale of their injuries and no precise remedy to render a speedy recovery.

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Topics: Foster Care, Adoption, Lifebooks

A Letter to My Son's Mother

Posted by Courtney Edge-Mattos on May 16, 2017 1:38:17 PM

I would like to extend a sincere thanks to Mama L for sharing this beautiful, vulnerable piece of her heart with our readers.  

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Topics: Foster Care, Adoption, Lifebooks

Faith and Fairy Dust

Posted by Courtney Edge-Mattos on May 9, 2017 11:00:01 AM

On Friday, May 5th, we celebrated our amazing parents at the annual "Foster Parent Appreciation Dinner."  Program Director Bob Costa thanked our parents with this speech we thought we'd share with you.  Enjoy!

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Topics: Foster Care, Adoption, Lifebooks

Setting the Tone

Posted by Courtney Edge-Mattos on Apr 27, 2017 1:03:42 PM

The gatherings were once small, just a few parents and kids.  There was no real zest or enthusiasm for extra-curricular activities.  That attitude was coming from us, the staff, and it wasn’t okay.  We had to change, we had to set the tone for the program we wished to be a part of.  Three years ago, we decided we needed to amp up the joy and we have never gone back.  Our Halloween party in 2014 brought together four groups of parents and six kids, that was it.  The staff on site out-numbered them, no question.  But wait, we said.  Word will spread and next year, we’ll be spilling out the doors.  Halloween 2015…we ran out of pumpkins for kids to decorate, polished off eighteen pizzas, innumerable cookies, and poured countless cups of juice.  Kids were in costumes, parents were in costumes.  The next year (October 2016), we realized that the office was just too small to contain our team, so we decided to host Autumn Fest on the grounds.  Scores of children, families, and friends gathered on a sunny (though super windy!) day to celebrate and enjoy togetherness.  Parents pitched in and helped, staff members got to be silly and just have fun with their kids, and we all ended the day a little lighter in spirit.  This past fall brought a rainy Autumn Fest, but the weather didn’t stop us, it just made us get creative with space and stand a little closer, huddled under umbrellas.  We sang karaoke in the hallways, danced “the bump” in the foyer, and had games in every office.  You know you are in the right place if, even soaked to the bone, you are happy to be there! 

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Foster Care...Foster Hope

A Blog to Support Foster Parents

Our foster care program is rooted in the principle that every child deserves to feel safe, to be nurtured, and to thrive. Our foster families and staff are committed to maximizing each child's potential within our stable and loving foster homes.

Remember:
  • Stable homes nurture neglected children.
  • Compassionate homes mend painful pasts.
  • YOUR home can change the life of a child.

If you are interested in becoming a foster parent, please complete our foster care interest form.

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