Congrats to William Harris for being named this year’s Best Foster Parent of 2020. We will update this page with photos of Mr. Harris receiving the award as his foster agency sends them to us. Thank you to everyone for voting. Please don’t forget to sign up for our e-newsletter to stay in touch with us.
May is National Foster Care Month and is a time when foster parents are recognized and honored for helping children who are walking through very journey in life. Transfiguring Adoption uses this annual award to help encourage and spotlight a parent(s) who is dedicated to walking children through traumatic times and helping them to better succeed in life.
ABOUT THE AWARD
Hannah Eimers was a young lady who was passionate about orphans and foster children. Her passion was seen through her actions with her own adoptive siblings and her loving advocacy toward children who needed a home. Hannah was tragically killed at the early age of 17 in an automobile accident. Though her life has ended, her passion for helping children from traumatized backgrounds still inspires us and is the reason we will yearly award one parent as The Best Foster Parent in the U.S.
- 5 One-Day Passes to DISNEY WORLD
- Special Award Engraved With The Winner’s Name
- Transfiguring Adoption T-shirt
- AND MORE!
- Nominate a foster parent using the form below.
(Nominations will be accepted through April 30th, 2020.)
- Transfiguring Adoption will announce the finalists for the contest on May 4, 2020 via Facebook.
(We will also contact you and the nominee’s agency via the contact information you provide.)
- The public will be allowed to vote for the winner from May 4 – 24, 2020.
(Note: Your written entry will be used for the public to see and vote on.)
- The winner will be announced on May 31st, 2020 via Facebook and our monthly E-newsletter.
(Transfiguring Adoption will mail the award to foster agency or nominator to deliver to winner)
Qualities We Would Like To Hear Examples Of:
No parent is perfect. A great foster parent accepts this, owns up to their mistakes and learns from them.
- Advocacy for Child
Many of us dislike conflict. Many of us have overbooked schedules. Great foster parents will do what it takes for the best interest of their foster child.
- Continued Learning
Parenting a child from a traumatic background is “different” from traditional parenting. A great foster parent is continually trying to learn more about how to help children coping with difficult pasts.
Along with the qualities of imperfection and a willingness to learn, a great foster parent is going to change how they parent in order to do the best for their child.
- Creative – Think Outside the Box
A great foster parent has tricks up their sleeve. They have special games, activities, or bedtime books that “traditional” parents do not utilize to help their child(ren) to thrive.
This Year’s Champion:
Actor, J. Scott Browning
From Nickelodeon’s “I Am Frankie”
Read The Finalists’ Stories:
"Beth Lentz, with her husband, Jordan, are the best parents that I know. Every child who crosses their threshold--biological child, foster child, adopted child, niece, friend, grandchild--is immediately theirs. Theirs to love, theirs to raise, theirs forever. Theirs to reach the ends of the earth for; theirs to sacrifice A few examples: They live in Indiana, and in 2016 they were visiting us in Texas. They received a phone call stating that a baby with some health/physical needs was born that day, and could they take him in? Before I could blink, their bags were packed, they were at the hospital, and the child from this story was adopted by them in 2019. They took in a premature infant for a few weeks and easily moved around their daily/nightly schedules to accommodate her. They know every name of every child who has lived with them. They know how to differentiate the needs of each child. I've stayed with them & heard them stand strong for one child to stay in bed, in order to teach him independence & how to self-settle. I've seen them co-sleep with another child who wasn't ready to be alone at night. Their biological children have been raised in this environment of acceptance and love as well, and their permanent children love the foster children with the same immediacy and unconditional acceptance as their parents--which speaks to their parenting. They guard the children fiercely from environments or people who seem to not have the child's best interest in mind. They ensure that the physical and mental needs of their kids are met. I've seen them drive children to doctor's appointments, have therapists come to their houses when new spaces were frightening, and administer intense medical attention when required. A specific example: one child's g-tube came free in an accident. Beth and Jordan were able to follow instructions over the phone to re-insert the medical device without having to subject the child to an ER visit or further surgery. The child was 18 months old. During the Covid-19 crisis, they have also picked up the mantle of teacher. Beth is contact with all her children's teachers & works with her children daily, making sure their education has not closed just because the building has. They have given up vacations in order to maintain stability for their foster children, forgoing respite for the sake of the children. They have jumped through hoops in order to take foster children on vacations, giving them an opportunity they might have missed out on otherwise. Parenting is a calling. Parenting those who were born to someone else is a choice, and Beth and Jordan make this choice and follow this calling every second. Every penny they spend, every decision they make, every resource available to them goes directly to the children who live in their home. The number, ages, and needs of these children can vary day-to-day, but what the children receive does not. Their house is an outpouring of affection, support, and guidance, and I want to give them a small amount of recognition in return."
"I nominate Joanne Colon Thaler as the Best Foster Parent in the United States as that is exactly who she is! At the same time, Joanne has been a full-time employee for the Hillsborough County School Board, but passionately made the time for children in need of care. Joanne has raised three biological children who are adults, and are successful in their lives. Joanne has given herself and her time to approximately 90 children of the Florida Child Welfare System (Hillsborough County). Joanne has experienced and learned from mistakes throughout her fostering experience, but has always been willing to learn through traumatic episodes of children placed in her care. Joanne has a loving heart, and could never find herself to turn down a child in need. Joanne has advocated for all of these children in every aspect, to ensure that they received appropriate services they were able to benefit from. Joanne allows children to be themselves in her home, and makes it a priority to engage their biological parents/families whenever it is approved by the courts. Joanne has allowed children placed in her home to their choice of cartoon characters to decorate their bedrooms; toothbrush designs; and school supplies to give them a sense of choice and individuality. Joanne has also adopted four children from the child welfare system during her fostering experience, and is in the process of adopting another who is currently in her home as a foster child. Joanne, who is Bilingual, has taught this child who only spoke the Spanish language, to speak English since he was placed in her home on 1/7/2020. Joanne is warm- hearted and the children she has cared for, maintain a special bond, and love for her. In conclusion, Joanne is the absolute Best Foster Parent I have had the pleasure to work with, and the Best Foster Parent in the United States."
"William Harris is my husband and is an advocate for all children but fostering is one of his true callings. He has fathered over 16 foster teens. Most of these children have never had a male role model or a positive male in their lives. He steps up to be that for them.Regardless of the hardships and unfortunately legal issues these teens go through he does not give up on them. He has had teens steal his vehicle and he is at the juvenile detention center to visit. Knowing the child’s only consistency in his life For the last year has been his home. He remains in contact with them even after they have aged out of foster care. He encourages them in whatever they do. You can see him at ever sport game they play in home and away. It’s not always been easy for him Having teens can be hard. Some days are great others are not, but it’s always been worth it."
Thank You To Our Contributing Businesses:
Transfiguring Adoption is a 501(c)3 organization. This contest/award is only available for residents of the United States. This contest does not discriminate against person due to race, gender, religion, etc. The staff and volunteers of Transfiguring Adoption reserve the right to disqualify a nomination/entry for any reason for which they see fit.