Most parents ask a relative to watch their child so they can run to the grocery story, go on a date, or take a nap. However, some families don’t have a natural support system, and taking a break from parenting is not an option.
Respite care is a service that gives families a short-term break. During respite care, host families take in kids, providing fun and recreational activities. Kids get a break from their daily lives, and their parents get an opportunity to unwind and recharge, which helps stabilize families.
“Currently there are no respite homes in Lincoln County,” System of Care coordinator Jennifer Schwartz said. “This is a tremendous problem for the community because respite care is a crucial service for supporting and stabilizing families.”
To fill this need, Morrison Child and Family Services is recruiting families to provide respite care for kids in Lincoln County. Morrison is holding a Meet and Greet to teach community members about respite services on Thursday, September 26, from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Lincoln City Community Center, 2150 NE Oar Place.
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“Please come and learn about the possibility of becoming a respite provider,” Morrison program manager Melissa Jackson said. “This is a great program for people who don’t have time to be full-time foster parents, but can help kids a few days at a time.”
Host families provide respite care for children receiving mental health services from Lincoln County Health & Human Services, which includes children in foster care.
“Without this service, kids with mental health disorders can end up hospitalized or having to move from home to home,” Morrison division director Kitty Carter said. “This service really is a lifeline for these kids and their families.”
Carter said the goal of respite service is to increase permanency and family stability and reduce moves into higher levels of care.
Morrison which started doing this work in 2009, trains and certifies families to provide safe and interactive care for kids, ages 3 to 17, for a day or two in their communities.
If you would like more information about becoming a respite provider, email [email protected] or call Carrie Summers-Nomura, Morrison training and recruitment coordinator, at 503-736-6510.
Morrison Child and Family Services partners with families and communities to provide effective and responsive services for children and youth coping with adversity and trauma.