One of our affiliates, Toomey Residential & Community Services, is seeking foster parents for its Unaccompanied Refugee Minor (URM) Program.
Toomey is in special need. They are facing a shortage of foster parents in their program for Unaccompanied Refugee Minors. Foster parents provide a stable, caring environment in which children can learn, grow, and prepare for independence in adulthood. Those who become foster parents are stepping up to change the lives of children and teens who are coming from incredibly difficult circumstances. Serving as a foster parent is a rewarding, life-changing act of love that requires a big heart and an open mind.
Toomey’s URM Program is separate from but related to our own Refugee Resettlement Services at the Northside CYO. See below to learn more and for contact information.
About the Program
The Unaccompanied Refugee Minor (URM) program is a federally funded multi-cultural foster care program. Youth come from refugee camps around the world or flee dangerous conditions in their home county to seek asylum in the United States. The youth are typically young teens who resettle in the United States without their parents due to abuse, neglect, abandonment, separation or are orphaned. Goals of the URM Program include supporting youth in exploring and adjusting to life in America while preserving their own culture and preparing for independence.
There is an ongoing dire need for foster parents to support these youth. All foster parents will undergo a series of background checks and will be specially trained using a trauma informed, culturally sensitive model to understand these children’s complex needs. Approved foster families will receive financial support to prevent a financial burden being placed upon the family. Foster parents work as part of a casework team to meet the youth’s medical, educational, emotional, social and spiritual needs.
The Toomey URM program is located in Syracuse, NY, and works with potential foster families within approximately one hour of the office. For those who would like to help but live outside of that region, the program recommends contacting one of the national agencies that work with unaccompanied youth: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops at email@example.com or (202) 541-3081 or Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, Childrenservices@lirs.org, (410) 230-2700.
Anyone interested in learning more about the URM program can contact the Foster Parent Program Manager, Jocelyne Hakizimana, at 315-424-1845 or Jhakizimana@toomeyresidential.org.