Teenager wants to avoid more rejection in future
BY AMY FLOWERS UMBLE
Lavar has given up on having a family.
At 15, he’s been in at least 10 foster families and has been through one failed adoption.
Now, Lavar would like to stay in his Richmond group home until he turns 18 and is on his own.
That way, he won’t have to face anymore rejection.
“Lavar has given up,” adoption specialist Krista Watson said. “But we’re not giving up on him. We’re just trying to get creative.”
While Lavar thinks he doesn’t need a family, statistics tell a different story.
If he remains in foster care, Lavar will become one of about 20,000 American teens who age out of foster care each year.
Studies show that these youth are more likely to wind up homeless, in jail or pregnant.
So Watson, who recruits families for foster kids through Children’s Home Society of Virginia, is looking for relatives who may adopt Lavar.
She’s checking out other options, too, and hopes that there will be someone who can give Lavar a permanent home.
Lavar has been in foster care since he was about 7.
He was adopted at 8, but that fell through and he went back into foster care at 10. Since then, he’s been in and out of foster homes.
“I don’t like moving,” Lavar said.
And it’s hard to deal with so many different families, he added.
Lavar is a young man of few words.
He enjoys playing football and baseball, listening to music and talking to his girlfriend.
He also loves fashion and hopes to open his own business selling designer clothes.
For now, he’s content dreaming of a future without parents.
But Watson hopes to find someone who can guide Lavar into adulthood and help him make his dreams come true.
Amy Flowers Umble: 540/735-1973 email@example.com
WANT TO ADOPT?
Interested in adopting Lavar or any of the other children waiting for a permanent home?
Contact Krista Watson the Children’s Home Society of Virginia at 804/353-0191.
On any given day, 1,300 Virginia children seek an adoptive family. The Free Lance–Star joined with the Children’s Home Society of Virginia, a private adoption agency offering foster-care services, to spotlight some of these children. First names are used, but no last names are published to protect their identities.
The newspaper will periodically feature a Virginia child available for adoption.