All children are a precious gift from God and deserve loving families. We serve children from birth through age 21. Children in our programs have experienced some form of abuse or neglect and due to that, most have emotional and behavioral issues. Even so, these children show tremendous perseverance, love and forgiveness. Below you will find some powerful stories, pictures and testimonials. Please check back for updated information.
According to the calendar, Nick is 22 years old. But because of an underprivileged past, developmentally and emotionally he’s much younger. Nick entered foster care when he was five years old. He was in numerous placements and spent several years in a group home.
Once Nick aged out of care, life got harder for him. He has gone through periods of homelessness and been without food for extended periods of time. He’s eaten from dumpsters and stolen food, neither of which he is proud. On cold winter nights, he has slept in the Laundromat for short periods of time to stay warm. Nick does not have a high school diploma or a GED, so finding a job is nearly impossible. He also does not have a driver’s license, a car or health insurance. He wants all of these things, but does not have the capacity to earn the basic things he desperately needs.
Despite his situation, Nick remains resilient. He recently started working at a fastfood restaurant, even though it takes him an hour-and-a-half to walk to this minimum wage job. Nick won’t show it, but it’s difficult to smell food all day and not be able to afford a meal. When asked what he really needs, Nick’s answer isn’t money. He says, “I need someone to stand by me, someone to help me when I fall, and someone to help me get back up and on my feet again.” Nick doesn’t need a handout. He needs someone to stand by him.
The Raleigh office received a phone call from a local DSS agency that needed an immediate placement for a young boy who had third degree burns sustained by the neglect of his biological parents. Jacob was only three and had been at the UNC burn unit for over two weeks. The DSS worker needed a family that could travel to the burn unit for frequent appointments and would be willing to be specially trained to perform the needed treatments.
Angela was the first foster parent contacted. After speaking with the DSS worker, she began visiting Jacob that very day. The next day, she was fully trained to treat his burns and bring him into her home. When she got Jacob from the hospital, his only possessions were a diaper and a hospital gown. Through the generosity of the Grandparents Club, Angela and Jacob’s caseworker were able to buy a week’s worth of clothing for the child that day. By the next day, this little boy had more clothing than he could imagine. The little guy was overheard saying to his foster mother, “Are all these clothes for me?” She replied yes, and he said, “I’ve never had this before; I’m happy.”
With the help of the talented staff at the hospital, Jacob’s physical wounds are healed. With the help of Angela and Grandfather Home, Jacob’s emotional and spiritual wounds are starting to heal as well.
Kallie grew up in a world of chaos and hurt. Her mother was in several unhealthy relationships with dangerous men, who secretly abused Kallie over and over for more than a decade. As Kallie became a teenager, the abuse had so ravaged her self esteem and outlook on life that she began to act out in very violent and dangerous ways. She would run away from her home for days at a time and be found with random men. Finally in an intense physical confrontation with her mother, Kallie told about her suffering. Her mother was shocked and immediately contacts the local police and DSS. Working with the consent of the biological family, Kallie was admitted to Grandfather Home’s Banner Elk campus in July of 2012.
At first the transition was quiet, Kallie was going through what is referred to as “the honeymoon” phase, using her talents for singing and comedy to try and establish friendship. Soon, Kallie began to act out, not being used to having support from peers and adults, and not knowing how to express the fear and pain in a healthy way, she diverted back to her learned safety tools of screaming, hiding in her closet, and verbally attacking peers and staff. Even thought the journey was messy, staff did not give up on Kallie, or lower their expectations for her. After a few weeks, Kallie was able to use the new coping skills she learned in treatment to better express and articulate her needs. Now Kallie is establishing healthy boundaries and friendships, and realizes that she is valued; she can have a happy and safe life.