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April 24, 2017
For Immediate Release:                                                                                   
April 19, 2016    

For More Information:                                                               
Elena Rivera, Greater Hope Foundation
(760) 256-0432

U.S. Army, Greater Hope Foundation Announce

New Partnership to Help Local Abused and Neglected Children
Military Families at Fort Irwin to be Recruited as Certified Foster Families and Adoptive Parents
Barstow, CA — Army families at Fort Irwin National Training Center will have a new opportunity to bring love into the lives of abused and neglected children through foster care and to provide permanent homes through adoption. 
Greater Hope Foundation announced today that it has entered into a partnership with the U.S. Army with the goal of recruiting and monitoring resource families at Fort Irwin.  The agreement means local children who have entered foster care have a new source for families who can care and nurture them in a positive environment. 

Greater Hope Executive Director Helena Smith said the new program adds a much-needed supply of approved resource families and also gives military families a way to help local communities while they are stationed at Fort Irwin.  She added that the Commander Head-quarters for Ft. Irwin, Garrison Commander Col. Scott Taylor, and the Ft. Irwin Family Advocacy Program all worked diligently toward securing the partnership to further amplify family services at the training center and in the High Desert community. 
“We’re looking forward to recruiting Army families at Fort Irwin,” Smith said.  “These families have already demonstrated their commitment to serving our country, but acting as resource family shows their commitment to our communities as well.  We’re proud that the Army and Fort Irwin have put their faith in us to bring kids who are facing obstacles in their lives together with military families who can provide foster children with the support they need to face these challenges.” 

Resource families, which receive a stipend for their service, must be able to show commitment, patience, an understanding of children, provide direction, and be open and hon-
est.  Good communication skills and a great sense of humor are also important traits for re-source families, Smith said. 

Before accepting a foster child, families must be approved.  That process includes training and passing a background check for any child abuse or criminal issues.   
A key to the partnership is that approval and placement may only take two to three months in San Bernardino County.  Military families have had limited opportunities elsewhere in the nation to act as resource parents because the process can take up to a year in many states and by that time they have been transferred to a new location. 

Smith said Greater Hope will also work to match Fort Irwin families who want to provide a permanent home for a child through adoption.   
“Fostering a child means you can help set that child on the right path,” Smith said, “and adopting a child means you will be on that path with him or her every step of the way.  Either way, you can make a tremendous difference.” 

Greater Hope Foundation for Children is a treatment foster care and adoption agency.  It is a nationally accredited organization based out of Barstow, California. For more information about becoming a resource or adoptive parent, contact Elena Rivera at (760) 256-0432. 
About Greater Hope Foundation 
Greater Hope Foundation is a nationally accredited non-profit organization founded in 2002 to provide culturally respectful, family-focused services in partnership with the community.
Greater Hope Foundation serves children from San Bernardino and Riverside counties who have been removed from their homes due to abuse, neglect or other reasons that won’t allow them to remain with their families or care providers, and provides assistance to children and families experiencing some type of family crisis.  Greater Hope Foundation has offices in Victorville, Barstow and Banning.