Ten Best & Worst States for Children

From the Children’s Defense Fund

January, 2014 Newsletter

“Did you know New Mexico is the worst state for child hunger and Massachusetts tops all states in nearly every ranking of public school students’ reading and math proficiency? Check out CDF’s new report, The State of America’s Children® 2014, to find out how your state compares to other states. The report provides state-by-state data and comparisons on all indicators of child well-being. Additional resources provide a look at the 10 best and worst states for children in categories ranging from extreme poverty to health coverage to enrollment in early childhood development and learning programs.”


How you can help the young women in your life

The teen years are an exciting time, but these years can also be filled with worry and struggle. Parents really matter to teens, even if teens don’t always act like it. They need your love, guidance, and support each day to help them become secure, healthy, and happy young women.

You can help your daughter through these years. Build a relationship with her that includes trust, honesty, open lines of communication, and setting limits.

With the busy lives we lead today — how can you do this?

  • Spend time with your daughter.
  • Be a good role model for your daughter. Eat right, exercise, deal with stress in healthy ways, and don’t use drugs, alcohol, or cigarettes.
  • Try to find a good balance between work and fun in your own life. This will show your daughter that she can have balance in her life.
  • Teach her good values and a sense of responsibility. Then trust her to make good choices.
  • Set rules and stick with them. Setting and enforcing fair rules can help girls avoid social settings where they may run into peer pressure they can’t handle.

It’s normal for a teen to want to try new things. When your daughter is angry with you, she may rebel by making poor choices. Turn her mistakes into lessons, show her you still love her, and point out the good things she does. Teach her not to be ashamed of having a problem with stress, grades, weight, drugs, or alcohol. Learn about teen depression, suicide, alcohol, bullying, and drug abuse. Use the resources in this section to find out what you can do as a parent.

Even though you might feel upset and tired at times, everything you do will make a difference in your daughter’s life…and at some point down the road, she will thank you!

From:  GirlsHealth.gov

Teen sexter convicted for child porn

Something else we need to caution our children & youth about regarding inappropriate use of their cell phones.  See our other post:  Sexting: An open letter from parents to teenagers

From the BBC, 13 Jan, 2014:

“A teenager in Canada has been found guilty of possessing and disseminating child pornography after sending text messages containing naked images of her boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend.”

Read the story here.


FPT Fast-Connect APP Icon for Your Smartphone


Smartphone App Connect Icons are the handy symbols you click on that take you directly to an Application (or “APP”) or web site without having to open a browser, search for a web site name, or type in a URL (like http://www.FosterParentTraining.com).

You can “create” your own FosterParentTraining.com short-cut App Icon on your smartphone.

This should work with most smartphones and browsers.

1.  Open a browser on your smartphone.

2.  Type in http://www. FosterParentTraining.com or search for FosterParentTraining.com and click on the link so our Home page appears on your browser screen.

3.  When our Home Page appears, click on your phone’s Menu Key.  On many phones, this is located at the bottom right corner of your phone, below the screen.

4.  Click on “Bookmark This Page”.

5.  Under “Options”, click on “Save to Home Page”.

6.  You should now have an app type icon similar to the FPT icon that displays in your browser tab when you connect to our site.

For a YouTube video demonstration of the above instructions, Click Here.  This video is for an Apple phone but it also works with an Android phone.


Gun Violence: Saving Young Lives – “It’s Not Rocket Science”

Marian Wright Edelman, President of the Children’s Defense Fund, writes a weekly column entitled “Child Watch”.  Her column also appears each week in The Huffington Post.

In a recent posting, Mrs. Edelman proposes how treating gun violence scientifically like a health epidemic can overcome many of the obstacles and objections.

This is how the epidemic of teen deaths in the 1960’s from auto accidents was addressed, saving an estimated 325,000 lives over a 35 year period.

Read Mrs. Edelman’s column “Its Not Rocket Science” here.

ADDITIONAL FOOD FOR THOUGHT:   Youth & Child Deaths from Gun Violence vs Worldwide Deaths form H5N1 Avian “Bird Flu”.

  • In 2010 alone, 2,694 children & teens died from gun violence in the USA.
  • In July 2013 the WHO (World Heath Organization) announced a total of 630 confirmed human cases of “Bird Flu” – WORLDWIDE – which resulted in the deaths of 375 people since 2003.
  • Since 2003, millions of people were immunized against “Bird Flu”.
  • Between 2003 and 2013, no meaningful attempts were made to “immunize” children & youth from gun violence and death.


Your Input Wanted: Respite Care

Are you a Respite provider for other foster parents? Have you used Respite Care?

If you answered yes, we’d like your input so we can design a one-hour Respite Care Training module.

For instance, what kind of information would you like a fellow foster parent to provide if you were offering Respite Care for one or more of their foster placements?

To share your thoughts, comments, experience, and suggestions regarding Respite Foster Care, click here. Put “Respite Care” in the Subject.

Members, non-members, case workers, clinicians, and agency supervisors are welcome to contribute to this project.


Sexting & Cyber Blackmail = Child Abuse

Sexting.  If you’re not familiar with the word and what it is, you should be!

Wikepedia defines  Sexting as the act of sending sexually explicit messages and/or photographs, primarily between mobile phones.

And while most of us are aware of the problem of  “Cyber” or online bullying via Facebook and other social media sites, a new form of child abuse is beginning to arise:


This form of child abuse is just beginning to come to light in both the USA and in the United Kingdom.

Check out this article from the BBC by clicking on the article title:

Cyber-blackmailers ‘abusing hundreds of UK children’

FosterParentTraining.com is in the process of preparing a new Training Topic dealing with the growing problem of  Sexting & Cyber Bullying.

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