HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – A story that will touch your heart this Valentine’s Day… 19 year old Wendy is still in foster care, still waiting for a forever family. Wendy’s story is a Kids to Love special assignment A Family to Love.
“My name is Wendy, I’m 19 years old.” She says with a smile.
“How can you still be 19 and still be in foster care?” Lee asks
“Because if you do right and stuff you stay in foster care.” Wendy answers
In the state of Alabama, a child can stay in foster care until the age of 21. There are currently 613 young people in foster care between 18 and 21 in the state. Staying in foster care allows many kids to stay in school. You met several of these older kids in care after the Kids to Love scholarship lunch last August.
Wendy is still in school too; even though she’s 19…she’s a junior in high school.
“I got held back.” Wendy says
Today she makes A’s and B’s.
“I have to study a whole lot, it’s hard” she says
Sometimes it doesn’t’ matter how old you are, you just have to play the hand that life deals you…
“When I was like 7 or 8 my mom passed and it really hurt me.” Wendy shares
“Do you remember much about your mom?” Lee asks
“I remember me & her had fun that day she died. It was a blood clot.” Wendy remembers
“When your mother passed away were you immediately pulled into foster care?” Lee asks
“Something happened to me and my father and stuff so I got pulled into foster care.” She says
“So even though you’re 19 and technically an adult (yes mam) no matter what your age, you still would like to have a family.” Lee asks
“Yes mam” she answers
“What happens to children who are older if they are never placed?” Lee asks
“That means I have to wait… go on my own and stuff..have a family… I don’t have family to support me or nothing. I’d be scared to like going out in the world with nobody protecting me or nothing…. It’s kinda scary for me.” Wendy says
Alabama is one of 18 states around the country that allows young people to remain in foster care past the age of 18.