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Black Hawk County faces severe shortage in foster care

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (KWWL) — The honor’s program at the University of Northern Iowa came up with the Foster Fact Fair that had a panel of foster care providers who shared their experiences.

Almost half a million children are in foster care right now nationwide and that number climbs every year, and the rising problem is being felt right here in eastern Iowa.

There are many folks in the cedar valley who foster children, just like the Behrands.

“We just had a heart for children though we, both my husband and i have loved kids our whole lives like we both worked at daycares in college and like..we’re just kid people,” Lindsey Behrands said.

The Behrands have a biological son who has lived with five foster children so far.

“Usually having another foster kid in the family um, the, it’s not really that bad like most people would say, ‘It’s gonna be too messy in the house’ or nobody would like it but it’s actually really fun for everybody,” Ben Behrands said.

Lindsey Behrands says she decided to foster after having three of her own children.The need for foster families in black hawk county is especially severe.

Bambi Schrader from the four oaks foster and adoptive family connections said the reason why there is a high need in foster care in the cedar valley are because substance abuse and mental health issues coupled with the stigma that older children are harder to foster.

Waterloo police chief Dan Trelka joined the panel to speak about his experience adopting an adult.

“One of our adoptions was an adult adoption, it was a child being fostered in Colorado and the thing that intrigues me so much about foster care is the profound impact you can have on a child,” Chief Trelka said.

Lindsey Behrands says, with fostering, nothing is guaranteed.

“It’s just what you do you know that they’re not ours to keep but i know that with our biological children too they’re not mine to keep. they grow up, something could happen to them…same thing,” Behrands said.


KWWL Reporter

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