Meet Lee and Carrie Martinez
Carrie and her husband Lee have opened their home to foster children since 2007. They had a good friend that was a foster parent and she made it look easy. They decided they would try fostering one child to start. However, their first opportunity was to take in three siblings. Unable to say no, they began their foster care journey sprinting rather than walking. From there, they almost always have had three to four foster children at a time. Overall, they have been parents to 28 children.
Carrie and Lee have had many challenges over the years with foster care. The hardest is having kids leave and having no control over it. But it has also been very rewarding. They were able to adopt one of their foster kids that came as an infant. She joined the family on Carrie’s birthday. “We know that everyone of our foster kids has felt loved in our home and we fell we have improved their lives even if it was for just a short time.” Carrie says. “Foster care has been a blessing. We have seen miracles from it. It is a lot of work and it doesn’t always go how we want it to, but I am so glad we have chosen to do it.”
Having family support is super important when taking in foster children. All of their family members have been supportive of fostering and treat each child as if they had been born into the family. Grandparents, aunts and uncles alike welcome every child into the family with open arms.
“The foster care system is far from perfect, but there are so many kids that need a safe and loving home to go to. It’s so heartbreaking to know there are kids out there that need our help and not enough homes for them.” Carrie says.
Currently there are almost 19,000 children in foster care in Arizona and only about 4,500 licensed foster families. If you are interested in learning more about foster care and how you can make a difference in a child’s life, please visit aask-az.org
Thanks Carrie and Lee for Cultivating Goodness!