In October 2013, People Places Inc. was chosen as an Angel in Adoption award recipient by the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute. They were given this honor based on their commitment to improving the lives of children in need of permanent loving homes. People Places Inc. was started 40 years ago in 1973 as one of the pioneers in therapeutic foster care, and was the first such agency in Virginia. The materials they developed for therapeutic foster care are used throughout the country to train other agency workers and support families.
People Places is a private, not-for-profit Licensed Child Placing Agency serving children and youth between the ages of infancy and 21 years and focusing primarily on abused/neglected youngsters with moderate to severe emotional and behavior disorders. People Places offers programs that help support adoption, such as group and individual counseling, Pygmalion School and independent living assistance. Not every child who goes through the program is adopted. Some return home to birth parents or other relatives.
Children age out of foster care programs at 18 but if they are in school, they are still supported through People Places through their Coach Program. This program is funded by small donations and is only given to those teens that are still in school. The need for this program is great--Surprisingly, about 50% of the homeless population is composed of foster care children that have aged out of foster care and don't have permanent homes. About 80 children a day age out of foster care. "There is no one to go home to, ask advice from or to spend time with during the holidays".
When a family seeks to adopt, People Places has two different adoption tracks. One is foster to adopt and the other is relationship to adopt. Foster to adopt has the parents as foster parents first; if the child and family connect, then they start to go through the adoption process. Relationship to adopt is the track where the birth parents' parental rights have already been terminated and the prospective parents adopt the child without the foster care period.
It is a privilege to partner with agencies like this in Virginia. For more information on this program go to http://www.peopleplaces.org
Drafted by Brittany Alness, staff member of the Law Offices of Karen S. Law, PLC.
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