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Welcomed with Open Arms

It was the morning after Christmas when I received a phone call from a desperate young girl, sitting on a curb with nothing but her pregnant belly and a bag of hastily gathered items. Having recently left a domestic violence situation, she was frantically making phone call after phone call, looking for shelter and had reached me at Blossom Place. After several phone conversations that day, I met her at a bus station and welcomed our newest former Foster Youth in need.

Her first few days with us flew by quickly as we gathered diapers, clothes and baby items. We took her to county offices to be sure that her medical insurance was in order, to get WIC (a federal assistance program which provides supplemental nutrition for Women, Infants and Children) and food stamps set up so that she could feed herself and her baby. Finding a doctor to deliver the baby was a challenge since she was so far along in her pregnancy and hadn't had regular prenatal care...but the baby did not wait for us to get everything in order. A short 8 days after her arrival I found myself at the hospital, holding the hand of a young woman I hadn't even met until the week before. I couldn't help thinking how tragic it was that she had no one she really knew with her on this monumental day in her life. But as I encouraged her and we chatted about how much hair the baby would have and other silly things to help pass the time, I was grateful that at Blossom Place she would have a "family", that sweet baby Emily would have a roof over her head and people who were excited to meet her and watch her grow.

The number of former Foster Youth who don't have any adult to whom they can turn for advice or encouragement is overwhelming. One positive adult relationship can make the difference between giving up in despair and having hope for the future. Perhaps you could be that person, helping to change a life forever!


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