A Pittsburg Couple Opens Home to Foster Kids with Special Needs

  A Pittsburg Couple Opens Home to Foster Kids with Special Needs

More than six thousand kids need foster care in Kansas. And more homes are needed every day. A Pittsburg couple is helping and says you can do it too.

LaTaunya Martin talked to case workers, ‘”We got one that ‘ s in band. He ‘ s interested in band.”

The Martins discussed getting a clarinet for one of three boys they’ve made part of their family. After working more than twenty-five years with adults with disabilities, the Martins decided they could help kids with the same special needs.

LaTaunya explained, ” I worked with adults for years. Just to see the joy teaching them to do something. You do it over and over and over again and when they finally get it, we celebrate. Have our own little mini celebration.”

Looking at a wall calendar Martin said, “A lot of school activities and they’re involved in all of them.”

Fostering to them means keeping lots of calendars. And keeping the kids busy.

Martin said, “Just welcome kids to the home. Give them a good family structure, work with them to schools, and uh give them love and care and protection. A good life you know.”

Reginald and the boys worked this summer to restore a fountain. And they often go to garage sales and antique shops getting things to fix for their rooms. Reginald said they ‘ re proud to see what they ‘ ve done. He said as they restore things and the backyard, they restore the boys lives.

Their fostering is a big help to TFI Family Services which offers supports to foster families.

Monica Broadwell with TFI explained, “The Martins take on a lot of special high needs kiddos which, in this field or in foster care in general, is a drastic need.”

Between the two of them, they have eleven biological children. Only one, who’s captain of the tennis team at Pittsburg high, is still at home.
Both believe there’s no experience really needed to be a foster parent.

LaTaunya said, “We learn a lot from them. They teach you how to cope with different other things. It ‘ s not work, it just comes from the heart.”

And something they consider a blessing to share.

Reginald explained, “It ‘ s a caring love they receive from you and that ‘ s like boom! (hand ups). That amazing feeling to them and to the parent.”

The Martins are even considering helping by opening a group home for special needs kids.
If you’d like to become a foster parent, you can contact TFI at 1-800-279-9914.