Posted on Jan 10, 2024

Last week we enjoyed an entertaining and engaging presentation on a serious topic entitled - Finally Home - Serving Foster, Adoptive, and Kinship Families in Northern Colorado and Beyond.  Our speaker was Niki Mcintosh, the Development Director for Finally Home (FH). This non-profit serves parents and children with the goal of providing happy and healthy homes.

Audience participation was required! Members picked a number from 1- 10 which at the end of the talk was assigned to a superhero with superpowers. The audience was asked for some definitions and correct answers were rewarded with coffee cards to the Human Bean (who doesn’t want those?)  1) What is adoption?  Answer - “taking over the responsibility to raise a non-biologic child.”  2) What is fostering? Answer - “Taking responsibility of a child on the way to adoption or adulthood.” 3) What is kinship care? Answer - This occurs when someone in the extended family (eg, grandparents) become legal guardians.
The Problem is 30-50% of foster parents quit each year due to lack of training and support. This leads to a host of long-term consequences for the affected children and teens including homelessness, unemployment, and unwanted pregnancies. The average teen will have lived in 13 homes by the time they age out of the foster system. In Colorado 23,000 children age out without being adopted or reunited with their families.
Research shows that the best outcomes for kids and teens happens inside healthy homes.  Finally Home was started by Mark and Kristin Orphan. Finally Home provides resources and training that are psychoeducational, research based, time tested, and trauma informed. Finally Home is unique because it looks at the whole family as it seeks to provide a healthy home. It is one-stop shop providing in person, on demand, virtual help (in English and Spanish) through parent workshops, teen programs, children’s programs, a toolkit for big emotions, a family strengthening conference, community, on-going support with coaches and mentors and mental health scholarships. The impact - 875 children and 1375 parents have been served.
It reminds one of Luke Skywalker - he had inside him what was needed to save the Galaxy, but he wasn’t ready until he met Yoda who showed him the way! The numbers we picked at the beginning of the talk were assigned to 10 superheroes with superpowers identified in the next 10 slides.
How can we help? Finally Home received a community grant from Rotary last July.  How else can we help? – “Be a Yoda!”