Valley opiate epidemic increases need for foster parents - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Valley opiate epidemic increases need for foster parents

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NILES, Ohio -

May is foster care month.  Tuesday night, dozens of foster parents got a well deserved night out as they were recognized for opening their homes and their hearts for children in Trumbull county.

The need for foster parents in Trumbull has gone up 40% since 2014.   

Executive Director, Tim Schaffner says it's due to opiate addiction.

"The opiate crisis is especially traumatizing to children because they are sometimes watching their parents die in front of them and then being brought back to life so we are not only having more children in need of our services, they are more traumatized through living in an addicted household for years," said Schaffner.

Ron and Nicole Love of Deerfield are foster parents.  They see first hand the children effected by the opiate addiction crisis.

"Sometimes it's hard because you get attached to the kids but we just love them like our own. We just felt we've been blessed so why not bless somebody else," said Ron.

Nicole said, "They need to have individual attention and somebody focusing on them and pouring energy into them and giving them opportunities to show who they are and who they want to be, that's vital for all kids."

The need for foster parents all over our region is growing. "Foster parents can choose the age of the kids they want to work with. They can always say 'no'  if we call them at 2pm or 2am. it's always their choice," said Schaffner.

If you are interested in becoming a foster parent all you have to do is contact the Children Services in your county. 

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