BOISE, Idaho — May is Foster Care Awareness Month. There are about 1,800 foster kids just in Idaho, and around 800 in the greater Treasure Valley area.
Foster parents are always needed and Fostering Idaho hopes more people will sign on to make a big difference.
"I've always wanted to because I've always just had this awareness there's so many kids out there that need love," said Kylie Newton, who is a foster care parent in Boise.
Newton is fostering a baby girl with her husband Mike. She says there is excitement bringing another child home.
They have two young biological girls at home too.
"It's exciting, but at the same time in the back of your mind you feel guilty because it means something happened," Newton explained.
She knows they're serving a greater purpose though. The foster baby is in a safe environment until, hopefully, she can be safe with her parents.
"So you always want reunification if possible because they're the parents," Newton said. "If the birth parent can get their life together that's a huge celebration, and while it may break our heart because we're saying goodbye to her at that point, you celebrate because they get to go be a family."
Newton says training classes helped prepare her for what to expect being a foster parent. Monique Layton is with the program Fostering Idaho.
"We make sure there's training available and foster support.," Layton said. "We also have a mentor program that a lot of foster parents feel supported through."
There are courses through the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare as well.
"They do training because they hope people know what they're getting into and that they'll have tools in place to really hang in their and keep giving in this way," Newton said.
To find out more about being a foster parent you can call 211 or go to their website. You can also find information there about how to tip your hat to show support for foster care parents.