News Flash

Home - News

Posted on: June 12, 2017

Councilman Burgess Highlights Foster Children and Voices For Children Foundation’s Important Work

Councilman Burgess Recognizes GAL Program

Councilman Jon Burgess introduced Angie Chirino, a representative of the Voices For Children Foundation, during the February City Council presentations. Voices For Children, which has been serving the community for more than 32 years, raises support for the Guardian ad Litem Program (GAL) to recruit, train and support volunteers to serve as the “Voice” for the approximately 3,000 abused, abandoned and neglected children in foster care in Miami-Dade County.


Councilman Burgess explained, “Voices For Children goes around Miami-Dade County to help find people [to] be a voice for the children that are in foster care and without a home.” He continued, “You know, we have so many fortunate children that [are] here tonight with their families,” noting the many children, youth and parents that were present related to the Council’s presentations to the Homestead Youth Council, the 2017 AYSO Region 805 All Stars Teams and students from “The Town of Roxaboxen” at First United Methodist Christian School. He added, “[Angie’s] going to speak about less fortunate children in our county so that we may be able to help one way or another.”  


“I’m here to speak about a very special group of children right here in your community,” said Chirino. She opened her presentation by showing a powerful video, which made the point that foster children — like all children — start out in life with many dreams, but face profound obstacles and odds, which drastically stunt the possibilities in their lives. It challenged viewers to “Make a difference, Change their future.”   


According to Chirino, one in five foster children will become homeless by the age of 18 and only half of them will be employed by the time they are 24 years old. She noted that one of the biggest issues in the child welfare system are the huge social costs — approximately $300,000 — that are incurred for every young person who “ages out” of foster care over the course of his or her life. 


She said, “Every day in Florida, children are removed from their homes because their parents are unable to love and care for them the way they’re supposed to. Maybe they don’t have the skills. Maybe they have other problems — drugs, violence, mental illness. Maybe it’s all of the above.” 


Continuing, Chirino said, “But every child deserves to know and feel love and that’s where you can make a difference. They say it takes a village to raise a child. In the village of Homestead, there are approximately 450 children that are currently in foster care. She explained that 318 had been appointed a Guardian ad Litem (GAL) by the state — individuals on staff, with salaries. An additional 126 have GAL representation from volunteers recruited and trained by the Voices For Children Foundation. 


Chirino, a Guardian ad Litem herself, explained that a child with a GAL volunteer spends less time in foster care and is more likely to be adopted. Guardians ad Litem make sure children do not get lost in an overburdened legal and social service system or languish in an inappropriate home or shelter. She said that children with GAL representation “will be more likely to have a consistent, responsible adult presence in their lives and less likely to have poor conduct in school, less likely to get expelled and more likely to pass all courses.”  


For more information on the Voices For Children Foundation and how you can help foster children in the community, please visit beavoice.org.

Additional Info...
Facebook Twitter Google Plus Email

Other News in Home - News

NASCAR Trolley 2018

NASCAR and Nature Collide

Posted on: November 5, 2018
2018 Tribute to City Staff

Watch the 2018 Tribute to City Staff

Posted on: October 22, 2018
Inside Homestead

Inside Homestead October 2018

Posted on: October 3, 2018
SDI Quarry

Blasting Notice 09.28.18

Posted on: September 28, 2018
2018 3CMA Winners

Homestead Continues National Winning Streak

Posted on: September 21, 2018
Turkey Point Siren Testing

Turkey Point Siren Test 09.07.2018

Posted on: September 7, 2018
Blasting Notice

Blasting Notice 08.24.18

Posted on: August 24, 2018
Blasting Notice Sign

Blasting Notice 08.17.18

Posted on: August 17, 2018
SDI Quarry

Blasting Notice 08.08.18

Posted on: August 8, 2018
Inside Homestead

Inside Homestead July 2018

Posted on: August 2, 2018
SDI Quarry

Blasting Notice 08.02.18

Posted on: August 2, 2018
Blasting Notice Sign

Blasting Notice 07.25.18

Posted on: July 24, 2018
SDI Quarry

Blasting Notice 07.03.18

Posted on: July 3, 2018
Inside Homestead

Inside Homestead June 2018

Posted on: June 25, 2018
SDI Quarry

Blasting Notice 05.09.18

Posted on: June 8, 2018
Turkey Point Siren Testing

Turkey Point Siren Test 06.01.2018

Posted on: May 31, 2018
Hurricane Guide 2017

2018 Hurricane Preparedness Guide

Posted on: May 30, 2018
SDI Quarry

Blasting Notice 05.09.18

Posted on: May 9, 2018
SDI Quarry

Blasting Notice 05.02.18

Posted on: May 2, 2018
SDI Quarry

Blasting Notice 04.25.18

Posted on: April 25, 2018
HPS Bill Pay

HPS Online Bill Pay Maintenance

Posted on: April 13, 2018
Inside Homestead

Inside Homestead March 2018

Posted on: March 30, 2018
Blasting Notice Sign

Blasting Notice 04.11.2018

Posted on: April 11, 2018
CDBG Survey

Affordable Housing Community Survey

Posted on: April 5, 2018
Inside Homestead

Inside Homestead February 2018

Posted on: March 9, 2018
SDI Quarry

Blasting Notice 03.21.2018

Posted on: March 21, 2018
SDI Quarry

Blasting Notice 03.15.18

Posted on: March 15, 2018
Turkey Point Siren Testing

Turkey Point Siren Test 03.02.2018

Posted on: March 1, 2018
Inside Homestead

Inside Homestead January 2018

Posted on: January 26, 2018
SDI Quarry

Blasting Notice 02.22.2018

Posted on: February 22, 2018
Presidents Day 2018

City Offices Closed Presidents' Day

Posted on: February 16, 2018
Blasting Notice

Blasting Notice 02.16.2018

Posted on: February 16, 2018
Inside Homestead

Inside Homestead December 2017

Posted on: December 22, 2017
MLK 2018 Events

2018 MLK Weekend Events

Posted on: January 8, 2018
Website Updates

Homestead Launches New Website

Posted on: January 3, 2018
Holiday Hours 2017

Holiday Hours & Closings

Posted on: December 21, 2017
Turkey Point Siren Testing

Turkey Point Siren Test

Posted on: November 27, 2017
Thanksgiving Hours

Thanksgiving Holiday Hours

Posted on: November 21, 2017
Homestead-Miami Speedway

NASCAR Championship Weekend Traffic Update

Posted on: November 14, 2017
Inside Homestead

Inside Homestead November 2017

Posted on: November 14, 2017
Election 2017

Early Voting for 2017 General Election

Posted on: November 1, 2017
Inside Homestead

Inside Homestead August 2017

Posted on: August 10, 2017
Community Center Newsletters

August 2017 Community Center Newsletter

Posted on: August 10, 2017
Inside Homestead

Inside Homestead July 2017

Posted on: July 13, 2017
Hurricane Guide 2017

2017 Hurricane Preparedness Guide

Posted on: June 14, 2017
Inside Homestead

Inside Homestead May 2017

Posted on: June 14, 2017
Community Center Newsletters

May 2017 Community Center Newsletter

Posted on: June 14, 2017