Officials: 'Critical' shortage of Central Fla. foster homes

Foster care parents retire after 25 years

ORLANDO, Fla. - The organization that places kids in foster homes, Community Based Care of Central Florida, says a new law is partly to blame for what they're calling a critical shortage of foster homes.

The law, which took effect in January, extends the age kids can stay in foster homes from 18-21.

This summer, officials expect as many as 600 new kids who will need to be placed in homes in Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties -- about 20 percent higher than the rest of the year.

"It's a capacity game, there is an increase, that's why the need, that's why the call to action -- to explore foster care and becoming foster families," said Karla Radka, of CBC.

"I'm not even sure if I'd be alive if I wasn't taken in by my parents," said Kyle Foley, who has lived with dozens of foster kids.

His adoptive parents have spent the last 25 years taking in abused, abandoned and neglected kids.

"They just get taken away. Some of them don't know why they were taken from their parents, some of them actually do and some of them are heartbroken by that," he said.

The Foleys are retiring as foster parents this year.

Kyle said he'll miss sharing his home with kids in need.

"Sometimes you meet some cool people, I'm not going to lie, you meet some interesting people," he said.

The process of becoming a foster parent takes about three months; applicants have to go through background checks and take a series of workshops and classes.

If interested on exploring foster parenting:

Contact a Recruiter
Orange: 407-687-7115
Seminole: 407-412-2527
Osceola: 407-802-2262

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