A trip to the Tyler's Caldwell Zoo provides plenty to keep the attention of these young foster children. Dakota, his younger brother Trevor and their little sister Jasmine were removed from their home about a year ago because of neglect. It has left them with some developmental delays. "They just basically need to be in a loving, caring home that can meet their needs. As their needs are met, then they're able to thrive," says Mona Nolen, Child Protective Services Caseworker.
Dakota is five years old. He will be in kindergarten this fall. "He likes to play with his cars and likes to play with his Leap Pad. He can write his name. He can say his ABC's. He can write his ABC's."
Trevor is four years old. He likes books and stuffed animals. He needs to continue speech therapy. Mona says, "He has come a long way. He sometimes still has problems with speech and he gets frustrated, as well as Dakota, in trying to tell you different things."
Both boys warm up to strangers pretty quickly. Their little sister Jasmine is 13 months old and is shy after being left alone as an infant. She was just 9 pounds when she came into care at 3 months old. Today, she weights about 15 pounds. "She has developed a lot. She is gaining weight but now she's at a stand still with her weight," Mona says.
These siblings would do best with experienced parents willing to meet their special needs. Mona says, "They can bring a lot of love. A lot of nurturing. A lot of play. They are real good about play time with each other and the family." And the Gift of Love will continue to help these children grow and develop.
If you'd like to know more about Dakota, Trevor and Jasmine, call our Gift of Love hotline. The toll free number is 1-888-kids-275.
Gillian Sheridan reporting. firstname.lastname@example.org