Sarasota, Florida–October 18, 2016—National Youth Advocate Program (NYAP), a non-profit organization that already provides specialized foster care services in over 90 foster homes on the east coast of Florida, is expanding to serve Sarasota, Manatee and DeSoto Counties through a contract with the Sarasota YMCA. NYAP is a multi-state organization that has operated one of the largest specialized foster care programs in the state of Florida for the past nine years. Brena Slater, vice president of community based care for the Sarasota YMCA, states “We are excited about our new partnership with the National Youth Advocate Program. Their proven success in the state of Florida recruiting specialized homes for our teens and children in foster care will enhance our ability to maintain children’s relationships with their family, friends and community schools.”
There are currently over 300 children in foster care in Sarasota, Manatee and DeSoto Counties, and only about 140 licensed foster homes to care for them. The shortage of local foster homes has resulted in some children from the Sarasota area being placed in group homes or foster homes far away from their friends, relatives and the communities that they call home. Increasing the amount of foster homes in these three counties will allow these children to move back to their home communities, greatly increasing the likelihood that they can be reunited with family.
William Grear, NYAP’s Program Supervisor, will be heading up NYAP’s recruitment efforts on the west coast. He has been with the organization for seven years and played an instrumental role in NYAP’s recruitment of foster homes in South Florida. William states, “NYAP is so happy to be on the west coast of Florida and looks forward to helping more children and supporting new foster parents! The need is so great and we can’t wait to meet folks looking to open up their homes and their hearts for our children in need. NYAP will ensure you have all the support you need to make a positive difference in a child’s life.”
NYAP’s mission will be to recruit, train and license foster parents in the tri-county area who are capable of providing temporary homes for children and adolescents who have been abused, neglected or abandoned; these children have special needs such as emotional or behavioral challenges or minor medical needs. Other youth may face issues such as being pregnant or parenting, or being lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or questioning. NYAP provides specialized training, ongoing support and a financial stipend to foster parents willing to open their homes to these special children.
For more information about foster parenting, please contact William Grear at (954) 298-3328 or firstname.lastname@example.org.