COG and the Freddie Mac Foundation paid tribute to hundreds of foster parents from the metropolitan Washington region during its third annual Foster Parent Appreciation Gala.
The event was an opportunity for elected officials to honor nine outstanding foster families, and drew a crowd that included foster and adoptive parents, family members, elected officials, and social services administrators. The evening’s program was hosted by Barbara Harrison, NBC-4 news anchor and host of the “Wednesday’s Child” program, an Emmy-nominated weekly television feature that helps find adoptive families for children in foster care.
"As foster parents, you are perhaps the most important part of the child welfare system," said COG Board Chair Judith F. Davis. "You save children from growing up in institutions by giving them opportunities to experience loving families. Jurisdictions nominated outstanding families to receive special awards:
- Sarah and James Braxton, Arlington County, VA
- Jamie Kendall and Tim Dombro, Alexandria, VA
- Barbara Collins, District of Columbia
- Vicky and Graeme Tidman, Fairfax County, VA
- Gloria and Joe Parsley, Frederick County, MD
- Bill and Raine Dickey, Loudoun County, VA
- Eileen Hanlon, Montgomery County, MD
- Sara Furr, Prince George's County, MD
- William and Nadine Hallums, Prince William County, VA
In the metropolitan Washington region alone, 6,000 children are in foster care on any given day. Children in family foster care return to their biological families, become available for adoption, or are placed in a permanent situation.