Shame

This is a must read article for anyone that is involved with children in the adoption or foster care area.  

The Role of Shame in Adoption and Foster Children– Robert Hafetz, MS
January 11, 2017 via LinkedIn

“Human beings have 4 crucial needs; the need to feel (connected), that one (counts), is (capable), and has (courage) to handle life’s adversities. These needs have been named The Crucial Cs. by Dr. Betty Lou Bettner. When adoptee’s behavior becomes a problem or arouses concern it is to acquire one or more of these crucial Cs.”

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The Magic Bond

There’s something about horses and girls.   A bond that’s unspoken.  A trust, a love, a magic bond.   Something even more magical happens when a horse is paired with a child from the foster care system.   Here’s a story you need to watch, and it’s a great example of why we’re so excited to see the ranch in Houston open soon!! 

Watch this –> WFAA news story

Amazing Thanksgiving Weekend

Eagle Scout helps kids in care
You are going to love this story from Thanksgiving weekend!

Over the weekend, I was honored to attend a ceremony honoring one of my favorite kids, Davis Spangler, from Allen, Texas. I love stories of kids looking after and having a heart for other kids less fortunate.

Over two and a half years ago, I was contacted by this young man. He had been researching projects for his Eagle Scout honor. The project that caught his eye was a story in the media about foster children moving from place to place carrying all they had in trash bags. I agreed to meet Davis and his Dad. Along for the ride, were my two oldest grandchildren that were about the same age as Davis.

I remember instantly liking how passionately he felt the need to do something to help these kids! He asked if I would sponsor him on behalf of Azleway. His goal was to collect as much luggage, duffel bags, and backpacks as he could for his project and give them to the kids at Azleway. I do not think either of us knew what a daunting task that would become. Over the two year period, he would sometimes get frustrated because he had not found as much luggage as he wanted. I am sure there were times when he would have liked to quit. Thankfully, he did not quit! I received an email from Davis requesting a date for the delivery of the luggage.

I still remember when he and his Dad delivered it all to Azleway. I met them at Azleway’s Grand Prairie location. I could not believe the staggering amount of luggage packed into luggage that he had collected. That luggage did not last long in that warehouse. The minute the word was out……the luggage was moved to Tyler and handed out to the kids.

On October 21, 2016, I received an email from Davis asking if I remembered him. I replied I could never forget that sweet face. Along with the email, was an invitation for his Eagle Scout Court of Honor Ceremony to be held at his church in Allen, Texas. I replied I would be honored to attend. When I arrived, I could not believe he was a head taller than me, and was the more mature and accomplished version of the Davis I had met in our first meeting. I awarded him a pin on behalf of Danny Tiblet’s Foster Care Movement! If you look closely to the right of his Eagle Scout badge, you will see the pin. I don’t know of a better kid or a more deserving kid for this award!

The ceremony was filled with emotion. His family had travelled from all over the country to see Davis receive his award and be called to the “Eagle’s Nest” forever and all time. By the way, his Dad is an Eagle Scout as well. I learned during the ceremony that less than two percent of all scouts become Eagle Scouts. Letters from President George Bush, his Dad, and many other dignitaries from all over the country sent certificates and letters of blessings. Quite a way to spend a night during Thanksgiving!
Azleway thanks you, Davis! The kids thank you! And, I thank you so much for all you have done on behalf of this nonprofit. I am going to keep my eye on this kid! He has a great future in store for him!
Sharon Roubinek

Vice Chairperson,  Azleway

Founder/CEO-  Imagine Foundation For Kids

Advocacy For Kids Begins Here

Advocacy For Kids Begins Here- written by Sharon Roubinek: Founder/CEO of Imagine Foundation For Kids

What defines the word “advocate”?

An advocate is “A person who champions support or recommends a particular cause or policy” as defined by the dictionary.  I also like the words, recommend, prescribe, advise, urge, and would like to add the word “fight” on behalf of children.

As most of you know, I am an advocate!  When it comes to the safety, well-being, and lives of the children hurting in our society today, I find myself more than an advocate.

I believe that most who know me, know I am a fighter! I fight on behalf of the parents, adopted prospective parents, as well as the adopted parents. No, I am not a CPS worker, even though I do know some excellent ones. Unfortunately, I have recently become acquainted with some that are not so excellent. However, that is a story for another day!

Today, I would like to tell you a true story going on right now, as I am writing this as an advocate for four children and their soon to be adopted mothers. 

My phone rang over a year ago from a dear friend who asked me if I could help a family that seems to have “no hope” of a solution. You see, two mothers seeking adoption of two sets of identical twins had willingly, several years ago, allowed CPS to place these children into their homes.

The two separate Moms, at the time, had no idea the set of twins they took into their homes were actually siblings with placement not too far from each other. When they finally learned of the situation, they became in touch and have regularly kept “play dates”scheduled for the siblings. These children are thriving in their respective homes. They are very well cared for and loved, as well as nurtured.

When CPS dropped them off at their respective homes, they proceeded to file criminal charges of neglect, as well as sexual abuse, of all four babies. You see, the biological mother of these children is a drug addict, as well as many other things, including dealing in drugs. She is the mother of eight children that she has NEVER cared for or provided for in her lifetime. The older four were taken early on, as well.

I have been actively working on the legal adoption of these children to their adoptive families. In the course of trying to make sense of what happened since CPS dropped them off, the following things have happened:

  • CPS never stayed in the transition to make sure these children had what they needed and deserved with respect to social services, insurance benefits, educational benefits, as well as other deserving benefits.
  • CPS arranged for the biological “Mother” to sign what is basically a permission slip to stay with these two families that have always wanted to legally adopt them from the moment they showed up on their doorstep.
  • When CPS could not find the biological mother to take her to court in the criminal case, which was substantial, they chose to drop the case because “they could not find her”.
  • We immediately began to call CPS to speak with the caseworker involved. We later found out that she is facing two criminal charges as I write this and still has not been before the court.

There is much more to this story! However, I wanted to lay the groundwork for an ongoing struggle that is outrageous and would love to hear your opinion.

What if I told you that for all these years the biological mother has declared to the IRS that these children were all dependent’s on her return? (She has never really held down a job, so I find that interesting) What if I told you that she applied for every social service known to man for herself, and these children, including Medicaid? What if I told you that the fraud upon the taxpayers has been reported three times to them and they have done nothing?! None of the eight children have ever been in her care for any length of time. One of the older children was picked up in a crack house with the biological mom dealing. Maybe I am wrong….maybe the government does require you to report drug dealing income on their returns as well as other sources of income.

What if I told you that the families with these children in care cannot even get insurance on them under another policy because CPS dropped the ball and did not get the termination of the rights of the mother in place so the adoptions could move forward, making it impossible for them to be insured without an adoption certificate?

What if I told you that the biological mother continues to taunt the adoptive mothers and the families about going to daycare and getting her kids?! And yet, CPS could not find her. I don’t know because I am thinking about the line in so many movies, I have lost count for someone to show up with a brain and follow the money! She has received her Medicaid income that all of us are supporting!

These children and their wonderful families have suffered long enough! Shame on CPS for dropping kids on the doorsteps of these families and walking away, leaving all of them in the lurch! Yes, I am an advocate for them, and I will continue to get the message out.

Now, I need your help! Please sign a petition, make comments, or references to anyone that you know that can possibly help us get this situation under control. Trust me, I am not done! These families and these beautiful children need peace in their lives. They are scared to death that their biological Mom will simply show up and take them away. The fathers of the children are not even in the picture.

I am focusing on Medicaid taking action, for giving the biological Mom benefits she does not deserve, and these children struggling for the benefits they deserve. Most of us would be sitting in a federal penitentiary for such acts. I am focusing on the termination of parental rights that would enable these Moms to adopt these sweet and amazing children.

Please help me in standing up and being a voice for these children, and so many others, that have had their innocence stripped away, and continue to be victims to a system that is turning a blind eye.

Thank you for your time and any suggestions or help in this matter.

Sharon Roubinek-  Founder/CEO:  Imagine Foundation For Kids

Founder- Sharon Roubinek