(Family Features) In the United States, more than 120,000 children in the foster care system are waiting to be adopted. With no permanent family to call their own, the gift of secure, safe and loving forever homes is the goal for these children.
While fostering or adopting a child can be one way to make more family moments possible, there are additional easy ways to support children waiting in foster care who need help.
During the holiday season, consider these unique ways to give gifts that keep on giving.
Donate to Wish Lists
Whether you support a family working its way through the adoption process, give to a foster agency in need of supplies or find another way to give, your financial support can make a meaningful difference for children in foster care. Supporting organizations that fulfill foster wish lists is one way to help ensure these children feel loved and supported during the holiday season. Most agencies and adoption organizations have wish lists online if you prefer to donate items rather than cash.
Enjoy a Treat While Giving Back
Through Oct. 31, you can visit your local Wendy’s to purchase Boo! Books for $1 each, which contain five coupons for free Jr. Frosty treats that can be given to trick-or-treaters, family or friends. Proceeds support the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption (DTFA) and its mission to find forever families for children in foster care who are most often overlooked – teenagers, children with special needs and siblings.
Offer Your Time and Talents
Like other nonprofits, local adoption organizations are likely to run a lean staff and even leaner budget. Volunteering your time can make a meaningful difference. Easing the workload can help the organization’s staff dedicate more time to the ultimate goal of placing youth in permanent, loving homes. If you have skills or services that may benefit the organization, reach out to ask if you can help.
Give a Gift That Keeps Giving
Gift loved ones (or yourself) a simple present that continues to give rewards all year long. Benefiting the DTFA, Wendy’s Frosty Key Tags are available for $2 each throughout November and December, and allow the holder to receive a free Jr. Frosty every day for a year with any purchase.
Provide Aid to Adoptive Families
Families who have adopted a child may need additional support, even if they don’t ask for it. Reach out to a local agency to see if there are any families in your area you can assist. Some ideas for helping include delivering meals, assisting with household chores, such as yard work, or providing holiday gifts or decorations.
Quench Your Thirst While Giving
Supporting foster care adoption can be as easy as ordering a drink. Throughout November, when you use Wendy’s mobile app to redeem an offer for a free beverage of any size with purchase, Coca-Cola and Dr Pepper will donate up to $500,000 to the DTFA.
Learn more about how you can support vulnerable youth in foster care by visiting