TYLER, Texas — As COVID-19 restrictions continue to loosen, fundraising efforts across East Texas are picking up. One local foster care assistance group is raising funds and awareness for their cause.
"Can you imagine being a kid and having to leave your home and everything you know and then being told that nobody wants you in their home, so we exist to help raise families that are going to tell these kids that they are loved, that they are wanted, that God has a plan for them," Justin Hayes with Fostering Collective said.
Fostering Collective held its first-ever golf tournament called "Chip-in for Children in Foster Care" at Hollytree County Club.
21 teams went out to play Monday in an effort to raise money to help East Texas children in foster care.
"The Foster Collective has provided some different training opportunities as part of our continuing education as foster parents and it’s provided a support network of other families trying to do the same thing as we are," foster parent, Manly Michaelson, said.
"Right now just in East Texas, there are about 2,000 children in foster care but there are only about 500 foster families, and so there’s just a huge gap there and we really need to find ways to recruit more families," Hayes said. "Even right now in East Texas, there are some children that unfortunately do not have placements so they either get sent far away or they have to sleep in a CPS office or a hotel or somewhere like that. So we’re just looking for families that will be willing to show these kids that they are loved, they are wanted, and just show them what a family is.
The money raised will go towards the Foster Coalition‘s East Texas Giving Day, and they have a donor willing to match all donations made by April 27 at 100%.