Coyote Hill Celebrates One Year of Foster Family Training at Hannibal

HANNIBAL, Mo. (WGEM) – A Tri-State organization continues to help connect children with foster families.

Coyote Hill, an organization that also trains foster families, celebrates its first anniversary at Hannibal and shares its plans to continue helping children in need.

The Whitleys are about to become foster parents. On Friday, they had their final home visit with Coyote Hill to make sure their home is suitable for a foster child.

“We decided to take a leap of faith and we’re so glad we did,” Kelsey Whitley said.

Whitley’s work in the Hannibal Public School District showed her how many children need foster homes in her area.

“This is our community. This is our home, she said. “My husband and I are both from here and being in the school system has really opened our eyes to the need and that weighed a little heavy on our hearts.”

Hannibal Area Coordinator Brittany McCaskey said since Coyote Hill opened last October, they have trained 16 new foster families in eight different counties in Missouri.

She said 10 new foster children have been cared for in the area.

“It’s been a lot of work as a one-person office, but it’s amazing how our community has really stepped up to help the children and families who have been impacted by the foster care of home,” McCaskey said.

McCaskey said there are about 250 foster children in Marion, Ralls and Monroe counties, but there could be more because many children have drug-addicted parents. Its objective is to train around twenty additional host families.

“And that these homes can really work with birth parents and build relationships to provide them with comprehensive services,” she said.

McCaskey said another goal she has is to educate people working in schools and the justice system about trust-based relationship intervention so they can better support vulnerable children.

If you are interested in volunteering or becoming a host family, Coyote Hill will host an information meeting on December 1 at the Holiday Inn Express. It starts at 6 p.m.

The US Department of Health and Human Services reported that approximately 632,000 people were in foster care in the United States in 2020.

According to the Missouri Department of Social Services, more than 14,000 children and youth are in foster care in Missouri.

According to Missouri Adoption Hear Gallery, more than 1,600 Missouri children are looking for forever families. To learn more about how to adopt these children, click here.

Visit the Coyote Hill website for more information on becoming a foster parent or to make a donation.

For more information on tri-state foster care:

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