SHOW YOUR SUPPORT. YOUR WAY.

We’re here to inspire and connect you with ways to show your support by learning more about the issue, sharing what you’ve learned with others, volunteering, or donating. Check out our growing list of opportunities to get involved!

WAYS TO GET INVOLVED

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Donate Items

King County

Pierce County

Donations collected by Big Brothers Big Sisters of Puget Sound help fund local programs and services to support their mission. You can donate clothing,
shoes, accessories, housewares, and more!

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Donate items to help individuals become licensed foster parents

Skagit County

Snohomish County

There are a number of requirements individuals must meet to become licensed foster parents. You can help by donating fire ladders, fire extinguishers, car seats, and other safety items. When in doubt, an Amazon gift card is always helpful for families in the process of becoming licensed.

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Donate items for children ages 0-12

King County

Kitsap County

Your donations of new or gently used goods for children, birth to age 12, help to fill more than 1,500 orders of basic goods for children each week.  You can donate by organizing a drive at your place of work, school, worship or community, or by bringing in the clothes, shoes and more that your children are no longer using.

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Data about foster care in WA

Partners for Our Children

All Counties

Partners for Our Children provides research and evaluation regarding child welfare policies and practices in Washington, trends within the system, and training effectiveness for state child welfare workers. Check out their website to find out more about kids experiencing the foster care system in Washington.

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Federal funding to keep families together

All Counties

The Family First Prevention Services Act was signed into law in 2018, changing the way states can spend Title IV-E funding. “The purpose…is to enable States to use Federal funds available under parts B and E of title IV of the Social Security Act to provide enhanced support to children and families and prevent foster care placements through the provision of mental health and substance abuse prevention and treatment services, in-home parent skill-based programs, and kinship navigator services” (“Family First Prevention Services Act,” 2019). Find out more about how federal policy is supporting families.

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Racial disproportionality in the foster care system

All Counties

In Washington State, African American kids are 2.2 times more likely and Native American kids are 2.9 times more likely to enter foster care than their white peers. Learn more about racial disproportionality in the foster care system.

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Supporting LGBTQ+ Youth

All Counties

LGBTQ+ youth are over-represented in the foster care system. All Children – All Families, a project of the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, promotes LGBTQ+ inclusive policies and affirming practices among child welfare agencies and formally recognizes those agencies that are leading the field with innovative approaches to inclusion.

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Receive federal e-updates on foster care

All Counties

Get news updates and information on the latest child welfare resources from Child Welfare Information Gateway.

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Receive e-updates from the Washington State Department of Children, Youth, and Families

All Counties

Sign up to receive a monthly e-newsletter from Ross Hunter, Secretary of Washington State Department of Children, Youth, and Families, to stay updated on the state of foster care in Washington.

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Donate Items

King County

Help by donating new or gently used children’s items at collection sites around King County or by ordering through WestSide Baby’s Amazon Wish List for current most needed items.

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Educate yourself and your organization

Fostering Family

All Counties

  1. Host an informational event for your company and employees to learn more about kids in foster care, fostering, and how to help.
  2. Learn more about how you can build a work culture that is more supportive of families of all kinds—and the unique challenges faced by birth parents and foster parents navigating the foster system.
  3. Hire youth who are in or have recently aged out of the foster care system.
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Use your voice, leadership, and network

Fostering Family

All Counties

  1. Send a message of support using your company’s owned channels.
  2. Contribute sponsored advertising to this initiative through your company’s paid
    media plans.
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Share your time and expertise

Fostering Family

All Counties

  1. Engage employees in a team-building volunteer experience.
  2. Lead a volunteer challenge with other companies.
  3. Include youth in foster care in your internship programs, offer a career tour at your workplace, or invite youth to job shadow.
  4. Be a mentor to youth who are in or have recently aged out of the foster care system.
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Be a Donor or a Sponsor

Fostering Family

All Counties

  1. Provide a product or service-based discount, or proceeds from sales.
  2. Lead a giving challenge or supply drive in your company, with peer companies, or with
    your consumers.
  3. Sponsor this initiative—help us continue to invite our community to support kids in
    foster care.
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Provide A Comfort Bag

All Counties

Comfort bags are for children who are placed into out-of-home care or into care in a relatives’ home when their birth families are unable to safely care for them. At this difficult time of transition, children are often unable to bring any basic personal or comfort items with them. A comfort bag gives a child who is being placed into a stranger’s home basic hygiene items, clothing and a comfort item such as a stuffed animal.

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Fill a Backpack

All Counties

Donate a backpack full of supplies. Backpacks should include socks, a flashlight, a non-perishable snack and an activity item (book, fidget spinner, colored pencils and art paper, etc.). School supplies would be a nice addition if possible.

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Provide Holiday Gifts

All Counties

Fostering Together puts on a holiday gift drive to provide at least one nice gift for each child in foster care. Annually they host a holiday party for all foster families in each county. If you would like to donate gifts for this event and ask children to shop for kids their own age that would be wonderful!

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Discover your options for becoming a licensed foster parent

All Counties

Not sure where to begin, or what the difference is between being licensed as a foster parent directly through the state versus having the support of a private agency? Fostering Together can talk you through the many different options you have for becoming a licensed foster parent in WA. Contact a Fostering Together liaison near you to get started!

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Become a Licensed Kinship Caregiver

All Counties

Fostering Together assists relatives in gaining access to resources and support so they can focus on meeting the needs of their loved ones. By becoming a licensed caregiver, relatives caring for kids can receive access to more resources, including the same financial reimbursement that foster parents receive when caring for kids. Contact a Fostering Together liaison to learn more.

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Be Matched with a Private Agency to Become a Foster Parent

All Counties

Private agencies provide dedicated support to foster, kinship, & respite caregivers throughout the process of becoming a licensed caregiver and welcoming a child into their home. There are many different private agencies to choose from. By answering just a few questions, Washington Fosters can help you narrow down the agencies in your area that are the best fit for your family.

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Become a Respite Caregiver

All Counties

Providing respite care can be a very rewarding experience, often leading to close relationships between families over time. This kind of foster care is ideal for foster parents who prefer very short-term placements. You can provide respite care in a foster or kinship family’s home, or become a licensed foster parent to care for kids in your own home, short-term. Speak with a Fostering Together liaison to learn more!

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become a licensed foster parent directly through the state

All Counties

You can become a licensed foster parent directly through Washington State’s Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF). Being licensed directly through the state is faster and eliminates the “middle person” role of a private agency. This also means that caregivers do not have the additional support of a private agency that serves as a foster parent’s personal advocate to help navigate the complex system of foster care.

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Donate Gift Cards or Items

Snohomish County

Donate a gift card or any item(s) which are specified on the Hand in Hand current needs list. Click “Learn More” to visit their website for further details on how you can help.

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Donate meals

King County

Voulunteers serve Breakfast Lunch and Dinner. Donors can either donate food in containers that can be thrown away or in their own dishes which will be washed and made available to pick up later. The Landing provides the condiments, plates, cups, and utensils for their guests.

Times: The Landing is open 7 days a week in Redmond. Breakfast and lunches can be delivered in the morning between 6 and 6:45 a.m. or in the evening between 8 and 8:45 p.m. Dinners are delivered between 8 and 8:45 p.m.

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Provide Diaper Bags

All Counties

Diaper bags are given to birth parents of kids ages 0-5 when they enter foster care and allows the birth parent some resources to bring on visits with their children. Please provide items in new or gently used diaper bags that are clean. Please include diaper wipes, a book, a cuddle item like a stuffy or a blanket and a non-perishable snack.

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Help Foster Parents get a Date Night

Whatcom County

Skookum Kids sends a deserving foster family on an all expenses paid date night each month. Nominations come from the foster parenting community, and Skookum spends some time talking with each family about what their experience has been like. Skookum is always on the lookout for program sponsors, photographers, and childcare volunteers to make this possible four times each year. If you would like to donate to or sponsor this event, checkout Skookum Kid’s website by clicking “Learn More.”

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Receive Alerts About Legislative and Political Activity

All Counties

You cast your ballot, but don’t stop there. Sign up for Treehouse legislative advocacy alerts for a quick and easy way to contact your elected officials about issues that impact youth in foster care.

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Donate Items

Pierce County

Support kids and families in Pierce County by donating socks, underwear, tennis shoes, and pajamas for children 0-18 years of age. Check out Wishing Well’s Amazon Wish List to find out what other current needs there are.

Donations are gratefully accepted on Fridays and Sundays from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. or by appointment by contacting Program Director Erika Thompson at 206.406.2398.

The Wishing Well Foundation’s address is 12716 Pacific Avenue South in Tacoma. They are on the second floor above the flooring shop. The entrance is on the left side of the building and up the stairs.

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Donate Items

King County

Pierce County

Shop Amara’s Amazon wishlist to donate items to the Pierce County emergency sanctuary. Amara’s Emergency Sanctuary provides a temporary home to kids who were recently removed from their own home, for their own safety. It is a safe place for kids to land that gives families and state social workers more time to find the best long-term option for the child.

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Donate Items

Snohomish County

Support kids and families in Snohomish County by donating office toys and cleaning supplies for family time visitation, surprise gifts for parents and volunteers, or items such as new socks, underwear and diapers.

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Provide Baby Items

Pierce County

Donate items such as diapers, diaper bags, gift cards, wipes, and books.

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