Emergency sanctuary for Pierce County foster kids prepares to open

Jenna Hanchard reports

Amara, a Seattle-based foster care organization, is opening an emergency sanctuary to temporarily house foster kids in Pierce County who have been removed from their home and haven't been placed with a foster family yet.

"In Pierce County and King County and across the state, there is a foster care shortage and a foster care crisis. There's no places for kids to go," said Maureen Sorensen, Amara’s Pierce County director.

Sorensen said that Pierce County kids come into foster care at twice the rate as King County children.

"There are a lot of kids sitting at the placement desk every day in a social worker cubicles waiting for placement, and we wanted to meet that need,” Sorensen said.

The sanctuary is in an undisclosed home in Pierce County, and it will house and feed up to five kids for 72 hours at a time. Ross Hiranaga will run the sanctuary when it opens by the end of this year. 

"I hope that they can leave the space at the end of their 72 hours, and although they had a traumatic experience, at least say that we had an experience that adults took care of us," Hiranaga said.

Copyright 2016 KING


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