When children enter the foster system, they do so suddenly. An event triggers intervention and quickly the child is removed from a home where he or she is in danger. There isn't time to prepare, nevermind to pack, and the child's belongings are collected into trash bags. A child who has just experienced significant trauma or neglect is now forced to see her favorite items as trash.
Luckily Partnership for Families, Children, and Adults presented an opportunity to intervene with their Kids Aren't Trash campaign. Our dollars went to prepare suitcase care packages stuffed with a blanket, towel, toiletries, and stuffed animal or game for 40 children entering the foster system in the coming months. These items are theirs to keep and present an opportunity for dignity rather than despair at a time when it's desperately needed.