THE FOSTER CARE COMMUNITy
Lauren is a former foster (now adoptive) mom whose family was matched in our program a little over two years ago, when her and her husband began fostering two girls who had been in the Love Box program at their previous placement. Sarah, Izzy and Anna’s Love Box leader, had been matched with the girls since March of 2016, and had been with the girls through their previous two placements before following them to Lauren and Nick.
Lauren says, “Sarah has been in their life for four years now. She's been such a steady presence in their life during all of these transitions, which is wonderful--to have a stable, steady presence in your life when all of these things are changing. I love that the girls get to have an amazing, dedicated, reliable mentor that they absolutely love. Sarah just pours love into our family at every opportunity and each of us feel that deeply.” Sarah was a faithful friend to Lauren through the foster to adopt process, supporting her, her husband Nick, and their girls through a journey that can feel very lonely and stressful at times.
When asked how the Love Box program has impacted their foster care journey, Lauren shared, “I have always felt the support of the entire Austin Angels community since we became involved. I was so surprised the first time I met the rest of the staff and everyone knew my girls and their story. It made us feel loved and cared for. Anytime I have asked for help from Austin Angels they have said yes with a generous heart. The girls both received bikes, a camping trip, funding for a basketball league, so many clothes, school supplies, fun gifts––and they coordinated and funded the most wonderful adoption day celebration of all time. So yes, we have felt supported throughout our journey!”
The community and support they gained through the Love Box program left Lauren and Nick connected and empowered - something that foster parents sadly don’t always get to experience. “When the girls first came to us, it was a lot for me,” Lauren explains. “There were so many people who came into our home, we weren’t sure what all the rules were, and I relied on Sarah emotionally. I could tell her everything. She really listened to me. Nick and I knew she was there to support us and the girls. It wasn’t just all on us as a couple. We had support. We had another person who could help guide the girls, someone they look up to so much.”
Lauren says her favorite part of the Weber/Krueger family’s relationship with Sarah isn’t just the extra support, but the routine of being in someone else’s life -- hanging out and doing normal things together. Lauren says, “We consider Sarah a permanent part of our extended family… We feel so loved by her and her people. It’s overwhelming in a good way.”