KEARNEY, Neb. — A system in the United States that brings children to their forever home: Foster care.
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, foster care affects over 500 children in central Nebraska alone.
Deana Peterson with the Department of Health and Human Services said the goal of placing a child in foster care is to make it as easy as possible for the child.
That means finding a new family for the child is not their first choice.
Peterson told NTV News that they first look for family members, teachers or friends in the community to take children in.
"We try to keep the kids in their same school district if at all possible, same doctors, day cares, those sort of thing's so that they're not having everything in their life change,” said Peterson.
Peterson said she notices the need for foster parents even more when she sees how many older children are still without a home to call their own.
Fannye Placke with the Grand Island Boys Town told NTV News that becoming a foster parent might be easier than you think.
"So as far as becoming a foster parent, I mean really anyone who has space... Anyone who has time and I mean really, the heart for children. Really anyone can be a foster parent,” said Placke.
Placke said it is a case-by-case basis, but if the backgrounds check, checks out, there are just a few other important steps one needs to take.
If you are interested in hearing more about foster care and adoption, you can check out the McPherson family’s story.