At SOS Illinois, male Foster Parents play a crucial role in the mentoring and support of children in foster care. Though women have been viewed as the caregivers and emotional support core of the family, the climate is rapidly shifting. With the changing attitude towards men as equal or primary caregivers, we are finding increased opportunities for success and growth among our youth. In honor of Father’s Day, we are celebrating the male Foster Parents in our community and sharing some key reasons why male Foster Parents help to strengthen our Villages.
SOS Illinois’ Model of Care is Continually Growing and Diversifying with the Times
As societal views diversify and become more inclusive, so does the model of care at SOS Illinois. When considering an applicant’s capabilities in becoming a Foster Parent, we never discriminate based on gender, sexual orientation, religion, cultural background, or other areas of diversity. Our Foster Parents are passionate and dedicated individuals whose primary focus is creating a stable, loving environment for children in their care. Thanks to the growing diversity of men desiring to be caregivers, we have opportunities for male Foster Parents at SOS Illinois.
Men are Choosing to Serve as Primary Caregivers
Around the globe, men are making the choice to stay at home and take on the role of providing daily care for the children. In 2009, a study found there were 1.4 million stay-at-home dads, and that number has doubled in the last decade. As more men embrace caregiving, the views of the world are shifting in favor of that and opening up opportunities for men to take an active part in the daily growth and development of children. But the shift in perspective doesn’t just stop there. It extends to the desire to help shape and nurture children that weren’t necessarily just born into their families. Seeking ways to build stronger, healthier futures for children is a key reason in why men are finding fulfillment as full-time Foster Parents.
“The children at SOS Illinois need love and protection 24/7, just like all children need,” Current SOS Illinois Foster Parent, Tony Moyet, recently shared. “And that’s basically what our goal is: to make sure that they always get that. They get protection. They get fed. They get clothed. SOS Illinois provides all of that.”
Children in Foster Care Thrive from Positive Male Role Models
For many children entering foster care, their first positive experience with an adult role model can come in the form of a full-time male Foster Parent. Some of the children in our care have never had a positive male role model. Others haven’t had a male presence in their lives at all before coming to SOS Illinois. By providing them an environment with a stable and secure male Foster Parent, it allows them to have a healthy view of men before entering adulthood.
The Impact of Male Foster Parents for Boys
For boys, having a positive male role model is critical in their development and understanding of being a positive and productive male member of society. Male Foster Parents provide an exemplary representation for young boys to model in their own behavior. They also bring about a level of comfort and trust for boys, something of which they may not have experienced before. Additionally, these positive role models help to shape emotional health and maturity for the boys and young men in our care when pressed with the unique challenges and obstacles that boys face while within the foster care system.
The Impact of Male Foster Parents for Girls
For girls, having a positive male role model can play a large part in how they perceive and value themselves in regards to men later in life. Male Foster Parents at SOS Illinois illustrate healthy behavior and interactions between themselves, youth, Foster Parents, and staff in our Villages. They also exemplify stability for children in foster care, which will help young women as they move forward into adulthood and begin to establish relationships with others.
Become a Foster Parent at SOS Illinois
Men serving as professional Foster Parents with SOS Children’s Villages Illinois provide a vastly important opportunity for children in foster care to observe the compassion, care, and dedication of men in our community. If you’d like to be a guiding light, mentor, and example of stability for youth in foster care, apply to become a Foster Parent today.