The other day I was reminded yet again just how much is stacked against our younger children.
The latest statistics from the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) data for FY 2014(link is external).
415,129 children were in foster care on September 30th, 2014, a 4% increase from 2012
264,746 children entered care – that translates to a child entering care every two minutes in the United States
238,230 children exited foster care
107,918 children waiting to be adopted on September 30th, 2014
60,898 children waiting to be adopted whose parental rights (for all living parents) were terminated
50,644 children adopted with public child welfare agency involvement
Who are the 415,129 foster children?
39% 5 years old or under
2% American Indian/Alaskan Native
Where are foster children living?
- 4% Pre-Adoptive Home
- 29% Foster Family Home (Relative)
- 46% Foster Family Home (Non-Relative)
- 6% Group Home
- 8% Institution
- 1% Supervised Independent Living
- 1% Runaway
- 5% Trial Home Visit
Why did the 238,230 children leave care in 2014?
- 51% Reunification with Parent(s) or Primary Caretaker(s)
- 7% Living with other Relative(s)
- 21% Adoption
- 9% Emancipation
- 9% Guardianship
- 2% Transfer to Another Agency
- 0% (1,138) Runaway
- 0% (326) Death
Gender Preference in the US
*Gender Requested by Adoptive Parents
70-90% Girls, 10-30% Boys
*Gender of Children Awaiting Adoption in U.S. Foster Care
Same ratio reported for 1998, 2000, and 2001
48% Girls, 52% Boys
*Gender of Children Adopted from U.S. Foster Care, 1971-2001
64% Girls, 36% Boys
*Gender of All Adopted Children in the U.S. Under Age 18
According to The year 2000 U.S. Census
53% Girls, 47% Boys
When I heard the latest statistic, which isn’t mentioned above, my first reaction was to feel a bit disheartened. I felt like one more heavy brick was being stacked against our kids. But then that fighting spirit in me began to grow. My God is bigger than any statistic! He can overturn any negative stat and turn it into a positive one. Our children have overcome so much already. Yes, the tables may be stacked against them but I stand on the power and grace of God. The giver of life, the Redeemer, the father to the fatherless, husband to the widow, healer of broken hearts, sustainer, grace and forgiveness giver…I really could go on and on. I choose to believe in who my God is and His power, not the statistics that peddle their way into lives attempting to destroy them.
By God’s grace, our kids will rise.