Gov. Martinez Applauds Rotary Club Help for NM Foster Children
Martinez Asks Farmington Families to Open Their Hearts to Foster Children
FARMINGTON — Governor Susana Martinez today applauded members of three Rotary Clubs in San Juan County for their donation of more than 100 pieces of luggage for children in the foster care system. When children come into emergency custody, it often happens quickly and in the middle of the night. Children’s belongings sometimes are stuffed into anything available.
Governor Martinez says CYFD plans to give the hard pieces of luggage to children already in the foster care system. Caseworkers will take soft pieces of luggage, like duffel bags and backpacks, and keep several handy in each state vehicle used to transport children.
“This will give a frightened child a nice, new duffle bag to carry their things, to make that middle of the night drive with a total stranger just a bit easier,” said Martinez at a special lunch for the Rotary Clubs of Farmington, San Juan, and Tres Rios. “I want to thank the Rotary Club for their hard work to help some of the most vulnerable New Mexicans feel a little more comfortable during some of their hardest times.”
Governor Martinez also asked New Mexicans to consider serving as foster parents, or to adopt New Mexico foster children. Martinez says CYFD will host a community meeting on Thursday, October 18, 5:30pm, at the San Juan County CYFD office, 2800 Farmington Ave. Caseworkers and current foster parents will give a presentation and will answer questions. The meeting is free to the public, and attending does not commit you to becoming a foster parent.
“Our modern child welfare system relies on people in the community—in our neighborhoods—to become a temporary family for kids in crisis,” Governor Martinez added. “Kids need a real family setting and a stable home. Sometimes it’s for just a few days. Other times it’s for weeks, months, and sometimes even years.”
Today, about one hundred children in San Juan County are in foster care, needing a safe and healing temporary home. Of those, forty are school-age, which means they are six years or older. Seven of the children in foster care in San Juan County are more than 15 years old.
CYFD Secretary Yolanda Berumen-Deines leads New Mexico’s child welfare agency and says her agency needs more New Mexicans willing to step up and serve as foster parents.
“We have such a need for foster and adoptive parents throughout New Mexico and in San Juan County,” says Deines. “We really hope that if you’re even considering becoming a foster parent, you’ll join us for our community meeting next week. Fostering is not an easy thing to do, but the rewards of helping children are incalculable.”
“The Children, Youth and Families Department and Secretary Deines fight for the most defenseless among us,” added Governor Martinez. “These are kids who, instead of finding love and protection in the shelter of their home, lived in fear of the very people responsible for taking care of them. I hope people in San Juan County will consider opening their hearts and homes to become foster parents.”
For information on how to become an adoptive or foster parent, attend CYFD’s community meeting on October 18, 5:30 p.m. at 2800 Farmington Ave, or call 1-800-432-2075.