The children News channel 8's Carole Lambert features weekly in "Waiting Child" are in OKDHS foster care. They've been removed from their biological homes due to suspected abuse and neglect. And, often, Carole hears from viewers who can't necessarily adopt, but want to help these kids have a brighter future.
The new TAPC Foster Parent Resource Center in Tulsa is an easy, excellent, and immediate way to help.
Carole's video profiles Helen Lee, a generous woman who has devoted 41 years of her life to being a foster parent. She's cared for children of all ages, and recently was asked by DHS to take in a baby. It had been four years since Helen had cared for an infant, so she did not have any of the immediate basic needs for the child.
And, now, with help from this new resource center in Tulsa, she can be ready within hours to foster a child of any age.
"And, when they call you and say will you take a baby? And, you have no diapers, you have no little cuddly things, blankets, all those different things you need for a baby, clothes.. maybe a baby bed."
And, now, all foster parents in Tulsa County can enjoy that same confidence of being ready when asked to care for children who have been taken into protective custody.
The non profit center is spear headed by Tulsa Advocates for the Protection of Children. Through fund raising and donations, TAPC's mission is to help foster parents get immediate basic items they need for kids placed in their homes. And, best of all, at the resource center, everything is free.
Plus, the TAPC Foster Parent Resource Center also helps provide the extras for foster kids. So, they too, can have fun and enriching experiences. April Waller is a board member with TAPC.
"School uniforms, band uniforms, prom dresses, the things that you would provide for your own child that is beyond basic needs."
And, the resource center makes season passes available for foster parents to places like Big Splash, The Tulsa Air& Space museum, or the Tulsa Zoo. Passes are checked out, used and then returned. Much like checking out a book at the library.
The resource center is located near 51st and Harvard, in the Country Club Plaza, where even the space is donated by the owners of Country Club Plaza.
TAPC volunteers will be happy to accept new and gently used items for ages newborn through 18 years old. Whether clothing, car seats, diapers, books, toys or the like, rest assured your donations will be put to good use. There's even a gift registry list at several local stores that will make it easy for you to purchase new items. And, of course, cash contributions are always appreciated. And, remember, your donation is tax deductible.
If you would like to learn more about the TAPC Foster Family Resource Center, visit their web site www.tapchelps.org.
Together, we can help make a difference for kids who are in state custody through no fault of their own.