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Press Release
May 12, 2010

NYC Administration for Children’s Services Celebrates National Foster Care Month by Honoring Foster Parents

Children’s Services’ Office Of Parent Support and Recruitment Hosts Foster Parent Recognition Event To Honor  NYC’s Foster And Kinship Parents

New Yorkers Are Encouraged To Make A Difference In The Lives Of Children In Foster Care

New York City’s Administration for Children’s Services (ACS) held its annual Foster Parent Recognition ceremony last night at the Brooklyn Museum Beaux Arts Court to recognize more than 40 New Yorkers who have opened their hearts and homes to children as foster and adoptive parents. As part of the month-long celebration, Children’s Services this week launched a public service campaign to recruit foster parents for NYC children and youth titled “Be Their Champion – Become a Foster Parent to a New York City Child.”

“I sincerely thank our foster parents who keep our children safe,” said ACS Commissioner John B. Mattingly. “They help recruit new foster and adoptive parents for children who are in need of homes. We encourage everyone to reach out in some way to a child or a foster family – they need strong networks of support and assistance, as do all families.”  

A picture of ACS Commissioner John B. Mattingly and the honorees
A picture of ACS Commissioner John B. Mattingly and the honorees. View larger size

The honorees are:
Magaly Claudio – Abbott House
Carmen Cardona – Cardinal McCloskey Services
Joyce Hargrove – Cardinal McCloskey Services
Juanita Bryant – Catholic Guardian Society and Home Bureau
Mary Brown – Children’s Aid Society
Listra Charles and Winston Gordon – Children’s Aid Society
O’Donna-hue Osbourne and Van Lee – Children’s Village
Laura and Luis Carrion – Coalition for Hispanic Families
Maria Hernandez – Coalition for Hispanic Families
Anita Peterkin – Community Counseling and Mediation
Pamela Thomas – Edwin Gould Services for Children and Families
Nadine Bell-King – Episcopal Social Services
Maria Henry – Forestdale, Inc.
Monique Matthews – Good Shepherd Services
Veronica Conyers – Graham-Windham
Carla Marcovitch – Graham-Windham
Debra McDowell – Harlem Dowling
Gilda Justino – Heartshare
Celeine Bloom – Inwood House
Corrine Butt – Inwood House
Linda and James Nevilee – Jewish Child Care Association
Valentina Staton – Leake and Watts
Shirley Whaley – Leake and Watts
Mattie Simms – Little Flower Children Services
Sonia Bryan – Lutheran Social Services
Brenda Moore and Leon Bethune – Mercy First
Vickie Moore – MercyFirst
Yvonne – Oglesby – New Alternatives for Children
Anneldy Aguilera and Amed Matos – New York Foundling
Yolanda Rodriguez – New York Foundling
Karneya and Mendy Kramer – Ohel
Ursula and Julio Guzman – SCO Family of Services
Mary Jones – SCO Family of Services
Joan Arnold – Seaman’s Society for Children and Families
Belinda Jones – Seaman’s Society for Children and Families
Lois Bryan – St. Dominic’s Home
Martiza Manzueta – St. Dominic’s Home
Mary Boyce – St. Vincent’s Services
Catherine and Arthur Crawford – St. Vincent’s Services

Juanita Bryant, who has been a foster parent for 26 years, said, “If you can help one child it is like helping an entire village.” Juanita has helped dozens of foster children over the years and also adopted a foster child, her daughter who is now 25 years old. She also has twin daughters, now 21 years old.

Carla Marcovitch, who has been a foster parent for 15 years, says she is very proud of her four foster children who have gone to college. “I decided that I could make a difference,” Marcovitch said. Helping foster children is in the Marcovitch family. Carla’s sister is also a foster parent and has adopted foster children.

National Foster Care Awareness Month is a time to raise New Yorkers’ awareness about foster care. Children’s Services launched a foster parent recruitment campaign with a series of radio and internet ads with the theme “Be Their Champion – Become a Foster Parent to a New York City Child.” Go to the ACS website to see the print campaign. To hear the radio ads click here: English and Spanish.

To help children and families, Children’s Services is currently involved in the following initiatives:

  • Working to see to it that as many children as possible who enter care will achieve permanency within one year – through safe return home or placement with a family willing to adopt. By July 1, 2010, children in care will have a specific, time-targeted plan for permanence within one year. These plans will be developed through family team conferences and recommendations to the Family Court.
  • For youth 18-21, no youth will leave care without a connection to a caring adult, a chance for stable housing, employment, medical coverage, and a support plan. Further, we are working to increase the percentage of youth who leave foster care for family settings each year for the next several years.

ACS’ website also offers information for prospective foster parents. The site also features a revamped application page to make it easier for prospective families to indicate their interest in becoming a foster family. Go to www.nyc.gov/acs or click here Become a Foster or Adoptive Parent.
For more information about becoming a foster or adoptive parent, visit http://www.nyc.gov/html/acs/html/become_parent/become_parent.shtml. You’ll learn about the process of becoming a foster parent and see photos and biographies of children who are available for adoption. You can also call 212-676-WISH.

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Contact:
Sharman Stein / Laura Postiglione 212-341-0999


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