May 2021 Issue 38

Arizona Foster Care Month

May is recognized at the state and federal levels as Foster Care Month. The intention is to bring awareness to children impacted by foster care. In Arizona, we like to take the month to celebrate our foster families who give so much of themselves throughout the year to our community in an effort to help children and families, involved in the foster care system, launch a healthier future. The Department of Child Safety (DCS) extends the utmost gratitude for your efforts and contributions in these challenging times.

This year we are proud to announce that DCS has partnered with organizations and businesses throughout the state to offer perks and discounts to our foster and kinship families. If you are an active foster or kinship family, keep an eye out in the mail for details!

Implicit Bias

Implicit bias is a snap judgement/decision that our brain makes unconsciously based on our previous experiences, in an effort to maximize processing of information. One of the challenges of this, is that sometimes that judgment or decision can be incorrect.

Implicit bias can impact all areas of our lives from work, to social interactions, and yes even our choices in parenting. Being conscious and managing our biases is an important task of a adoptive parents and foster and kinship caregivers. As caregivers, we often make thousands of decisions a day without fully processing what impact those decisions may have on our children. Many of those decisions are impacted by our bias.

Below is a short video that explains bias and a link to more videos with examples of how to manage bias.

Arizona Association of Foster & Adoptive Parents

Foster, Kinship, and Adoptive families who live in Arizona and parent children from a state child welfare system are invited to join AZAFAP! We are a nonprofit organization, by families, for families, that provides connections and supports in Arizona! Free basic membership provides our newsletter full of information and resources. Premier membership is a small annual fee that pays for itself multiple times over after you have participated in our shoe, jacket, or bike and toy event! We are just finishing up our 7 weekends of family camps, and we look forward to our golf event and staycation this summer! Please join on our website at www.azafap.org under Membership. We have events in Tucson and Phoenix, and we are looking to expand up north!

Arizona Helping Hands

Arizona Helping Hands is the largest provider of essential items for children in foster care in Arizona. Our programs provide a safe place to sleep, clothing, hygiene items, birthday packages, backpacks filled with school supplies, licensing safety items, foster footlockers, and more.

Visit us online at azhelpinghands.org to learn more and make an appointment today!


Raise the Future Trainings

Raise the Future, previously known as the Adoption Exchange now offers a variety of online training programs. Please check them out at the link below.

Training With Child Crisis AZ


Christian Family Care Training

AZ.127 Foster Family Support & Connections

AZ.127 will be offering support via Facebook & Instagram mini-sessions of techniques and tools from the Trust-Based Relational Intervention program. Additionally, they will be matching mentor foster families with foster families in need of support.

Jose's Closet

Sunny's Closet

FBI Teen Academy

Caring Connections for Special Needs

Early Head Start

Royal Family Kids Camp

Arizona Early Intervention Program

Tucson Resource

Spreading Threads is a grassroots, nonprofit community clothing bank that provides free clothes to foster youth in southern Arizona. The organization was founded by two foster moms in Tucson who have fostered and adopted several children in Arizona. Your donations go directly to local children in need. The second Saturday of each month foster, adoptive, and kinship families can visit the clothing bank. A Notice to Provider will be needed. The clothing bank events are held at 1870 W. Prince, Suite 54 in Tucson.

Respite Resource

A Mighty Change of Heart

A Mighty Change of Heart provides FREE duffle bags to foster children with new, age-appropriate items inside: 2 outfits, shoes & socks, underwear, book, diapers/wipes, hygiene items, and more. These bags have the children’s names embroidered on them, and are something that they can call their very own. They have delivered over 3,500 bags across the state.

Please check out their website for more information: www.amchaz.com. If your family, business, church group or school would be interested in holding a donation drive, please contact A Mighty Change of Heart. Items are always needed.

Warmline Supports Kinship and Foster Families

The Foster Parent Warmline is available for kinship families and licensed foster parents. While not an emergency number, Warmline staff can assist with information, authorizations for services, timely communication, and support. It is not intended to discourage or replace direct and regular communication between the DCS Specialist and the out-of-home caregiver. You can reach the Warmline by calling 1-877-KIDSNEEDU (1-877-543-7633) and selecting Option 3. Warmline staff are available during business hours. Callers also have the option of leaving a voice message.

Children's Heart Gallery

More than 70 percent of the children in need of forever families are adopted by their relatives or foster parents. For the remainder, special recruitment efforts like the Heart Gallery are used to connect them with a forever family.

The children featured in the Heart Gallery represent all ethnic groups and range from toddlers to teenagers. Some have special behavioral or medical needs, some are without siblings, and others are in groups of siblings.


Between his love for fishing and biking, there’s one thing you can be sure of: When the sun’s out, there’s a good chance Lee is too. This young teen dreams of finding a family who enjoys the outdoors as much as he does, and he would be particularly thrilled to have an older sibling who could spend time playing with him. He even wants to be a paleontologist when he grows up — a passion that his new family could help nurture. Sweet and respectful — with a knack for telling jokes — Lee delights in making other people smile.


eet Nelly! A young lady that enjoys puzzles, word searches, the Disney channel, music, dancing and physical fitness! She is a very motivated individual and strives to maintain a healthy lifestyle through her physical fitness. Outside of being physically fit, Nelly has a great passion for the arts. She enjoys painting and arts and crafts projects. The right family for Nelly will be one that is very structured, patient and able to push and motivate her to be the best she can be. Nelly does very well with verbal praise and will benefit from a family that is able to provide her with positive reinforcement. Nelly is a child that will amaze you with her confidence, determination and perseverance. Nelly was born in 2003

Jason & Brian

Jason and Brian are identical twins! Jason likes to point out that he is the older brother by two minutes.

Jason and Brian are two bright, inquisitive boys who like to joke and laugh. They both like gadgets, video games, watching TV and listening to music. While Brian likes country, Jason prefers alternative rock.

Brian and Jason are very interested in cars, ATVs, mechanics, and electronics. Jason and Brian like sports, but have not been exposed to organized youth sports. The boys show excitement and enthusiasm when introduced to new activities where their creative, imaginative and active personalities can shine.

They are most successful in an environment with clear boundaries, a regular, consistent schedule and clear expectations. They would fit best with a family that is patient and persistent in helping the boys find their place in a forever home.

Jason and Brian were born in 2005.

AZ Families Thrive is published monthly by the Arizona Department of Child Safety to inform foster, kinship and adoptive families across the state. Ricky Denwood created this edition, please feel free to email with questions, comments or content you may be interested in seeing in future editions. Sign up to receive email updates when new issues are posted.

Interested in becoming a foster or adoptive parent? Call us: 1-877-KIDS-NEEDU (1-877-543-7633) or email us: FosterAdoption@azdcs.gov. Visit us online: www.azkidsneedu.gov.

To report child abuse or neglect: 1-888-SOS-CHILD

Created By
Ricky Denwood