In 1963, the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. addressed the nation in what is considered a defining moment of the Civil Rights Movement. The yearning for equality prompted many to attend the March on Washington, and at that moment everyone’s passion for change was further ignited as Dr. King addressed the nation with his I Have a Dream speech. Like Dr. King inspirationally described a world he longed to live in, I Have a Dream for Foster Parents & Children describes the foster family’s dream for a world where everyone is equally loved.
Over 250,000 people sang, “We shall overcome someday,” with the hope that unearned suffering would be nothing more than a future topic in history books. As human beings, we desire to be treated with love and respect. Our country was founded upon the inalienable rights of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” In reality, though, not everyone has had the privilege to partake in these basic freedoms – rights that human beings inherently possess.
More than 50 years later, the unimaginable mistreatment Dr. King addressed in his infamous speech can similarly describe the reality of so many children in foster care. For foster kids and civil rights activists, abuse and neglect are a common denominator – and the same desire to break free resounds.
After dark yesterdays, we all have dreams of brighter tomorrows. Together we can move forward into making them realities.
I Have a Dream For Foster Parents & Children: Foster Parent
I have a dream one day there will be no need for foster parents – because that would mean every child is in a loving home. Until then, I have a dream that people will open their hearts to children who need them. I have a dream that no foster mother will ever use the funds provided to take care her of foster child for personal gain. And I dream no foster father will ever treat his biological children in a higher regard than his foster children. I have a dream that all foster parents will see caring for children as an opportunity to change lives and make the world a better place to live.
I have a dream that our societies will understand the importance of foster care and the difference it makes in their communities and the world. I hope the understanding we are nurturing future doctors, actors, Olympians and foster parents flourishes like daisies in the spring – and that others want to join this movement of change.
I Have a Dream For Foster Parents & Children: Foster Child
I have a dream all children are safe and never have to suffer abuse or neglect. I dream there is always a place of safety and security for the children who never experienced it. I dream all children get what they deserve – happiness. I dream of world where I wake up without the fear of being left alone and having to take care of myself. I dream that when it’s time to go to sleep at night, I have loving arms to tuck me in – without causing me harm.
I have a dream of growing healthy and strong with a chance at a positive future. I dream everyone understands what it means to be a foster child. We laugh, cry, hurt and thrive – we are no different than anyone else. I dream of having a voice in this world. And I have dream that someone will help me understand what it takes to overcome my biggest fears, so I can make a positive mark that can never be erased.
I have a dream that foster kids will not be judged by our situations – we had no control of our circumstances – but we will be supported as we take our challenges and turn them into stories that will spark the flame of conquering in others.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident – that all men are created equal.” I dream of a world with no abuse or neglect and where everyone is equally loved – because we all are worthy of it.
In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, here is the I Have a Dream Speech in its entirety.
We have come a long way in foster care, but we still forge ahead to make the dream of safe homes for everyone a reality. If you would like to contribute to this dream, please visit www.fafsonline.org.
Salendria Mabrey is a Communication and Development Associate at Foster and Adoptive Family Services.