WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — The foster care system can be a scary time for a child, and a non-profit looking to make those changes easier on children will soon have a new home in Wichita Falls.
Texas Family Initiative is bringing a service that really isn’t offered in Wichita Falls.
“So, to bring 25 beds to Wichita Falls, where there are no beds like this here, it is such an opportunity for us,” TFI Senior Administrator Angela Nowell said.
Devoted to strengthening families, the non-profit Texas Family Initiative provides care to local children in foster care and their families.
“It’s not just about keeping them near their house, it’s about keeping them near their granny and their school and their church and doctors, all the places that are familiar to them,” Nowell said. “Because coming into care is traumatic enough, coming into care and being moved 300 miles away from your house where you never see your 82-year-old grandmother, that’s even worse.”
Keeping the children local was something Nowell said was a big push to get to this area, and District 69 State Representative James Frank agrees.
“These are our kids, kids from Wichita Falls, Iowa Park, Burk, all over, that we need to be taking care of,” Frank said.
Frank added that this shows the real-life examples of what they do behind the scenes.
“A lot of the things we do in the legislature, you do them, and you think you’re– you think you’ve done something,” Frank said. “You haven’t done something until it’s actually helping kids. This is an important first step, and it’s probably not even the first step, it’s probably the six or seventh step. It’s just another step in the way of trying to help us get better at what we’re doing.”
By this time next year, TFI plans to have the 25-bed facility at 917 Midwestern Parkway ready to serve the entire area, with 5 emergency and 20 long-term beds, not to mention around 40 jobs coming to the city.
“So we’re going to employ 40 people, doing really necessary work with really great kids, and we’re going to take great care of them,” Nowell said. “I mean who wouldn’t want to do that.”
“All of us really, and any of the viewers, all of us can do something to help kids like this,” Frank said. “Obviously 2Ingage and TFI are doing some great things, but all of us need to be working to try to figure out how we can help these kids in need.”
The new one-of-a-kind service coming to Wichita Falls hopes to ease the struggles of foster care.