Starfish Family Homes — An Indian Oaks Academy Program
Starfish Family Homes extends Indian Oaks Academy's community support services to foster care families and agencies in Kankakee County.
Youth and Families Served
Through Starfish, Indian Oaks provides assistance to foster care licensing agencies in Kankakee and Iroquois Counties and provides support services to foster care families and youth.
Starfish Family Homes is committed to providing hope, love, and safety to abused and neglected children through the following resources:
Recruitment to provide more foster care homes
- Starfish provides resources to recruit foster care homes in Kankakee and Iroquois Counties so youth don’t have to move out of the county when they enter foster care. The agency also makes it a priority to keep sibling groups together in one home.
Tutoring services for foster children
- With assistance from Olivet Nazarene University and its students, Starfish Family Homes helps youth in foster care continue their educations and encourages them to pursue a college or technical degree.
Gifts and clothing for children entering foster care
- Children who enter foster care are often hurried out of dangerous home situations with nothing more than the clothes on their backs. Starfish Family Homes provides the everyday necessities and little extras to help these children find comfort in their foster home.
Annual Spirit of Starfish Giving Christmas auction to provide gifts for children in foster care
- This annual event collects donated items that are distributed as Christmas gifts for every foster child in Kankakee and Iroquois Counties. “Each year, many children in our county spend Christmas day hoping for that special toy or item they’ve been wishing for all year long,” says SueAnn O’Connor, Starfish Family Homes Board of Directors Chair. “Many generous people work hard to help us provide gifts and toys that make their holidays memorable.”
Resource Center providing low-cost, gently used items for foster families and youth
- The Starfish Resource Center is located on the Indian Oaks campus, and is open to all foster families in Kankakee and Iroquis Counties.
Community awareness to help abused and neglected children
- National data indicates that three out of four foster children are separated from siblings, many will live in six or more foster homes, and half will never finish high school. Life after foster care can include early pregnancy, public assistance, or even homelessness. Starfish Family Homes works to raise community awareness about the challenges facing children in foster care, and strives to create brighter futures for these youth by ensuring they are placed in safe, loving, permanent homes.