GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - Thousands of kids a year in the state have to be taken from their homes and they are put in with foster parents. Sometimes very suddenly. The need for foster parents is always a great one in central Nebraska.
Greg and Kindy Massing in Grand Island have fostered for several years. Greg works at Grand Island Senior High and even has taken in students he recognized.
“It's kind of funny because you know Greg seeing them in the high school probably had no idea that these were foster kids or these kids never had a home, these kids needed so much. They're like everybody else,” Kindy said.
Boys Town in Grand Island helps facilitate some of the foster families and get them the proper training. They work with about 30 in central Nebraska and say finding homes for teens is the most challenging because there are some misconceptions about why kids are in foster care.
“It's because of something that happened in their home environment so it's not safe for them to be in their home with their biological family and so I think that's one reason why it's difficult to find foster homes for those older kids,” Senior Director Megan Andrews said.
The Massing’s have taken in teen boys before and have even become guardians of some. They say some are angry from the situations they come from and can have some behavior issues. But they work to lay ground rules and give them a positive place to grow like the teen they are caring for now.
“This year he's doing so much better and he's not skipping school, he's in school everyday. We let him drive, he drives a vehicle and he's just so mature,” Greg said.
The family says fostering is rewarding for them to see the kids begin to trust them and improve in other places in their lives.
“There's a lot of challenging days. It's not all roses but everything you go through is so worth it just to know you've been able to be a part of their life and change their life in some way,” Kindy said.
If you want to learn more about being a foster parent go to Boys Town Foster Family Services