The Department of Children and Family Services is asking for more households to open their doors to teen foster kids as part of National Foster Care Month.

DCFS Secretary Marketa Garner Walters says teens can be some of the hardest foster system kids to find good homes for “about 20 percent of our kids in foster care are teenagers, but only about five percent of our foster homes request teens.”

The drive is focused on finding foster homes for kids in the communities they were raised in so, that they don’t have to leave their schools, friends, and other local connections when they enter the system.

Some families might be intimidated to take in someone who’s going through the often turbulent and hormone driven teenage years, but Walters says it’s certainly not the most difficult period of a kid’s life.

“If you can go through the terrible twos and threes then you can handle a teenager, because it’s a lot the same, they are learning so much, and their brains are firing so fast.”

Walters says having foster parents who are invested in helping teens make and maintain connections in their community, even after they age out, is vital to ensuring they go on to lead fruitful and fulfilling lives.

“We’re looking for people who want to be that kind of special person. They desperately need someone they can trust; somebody they can pour their heart out to.”

The Secretary says if you’re interested in getting more information about fostering, visit

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