In May, Foster Care Month, Loudoun County is celebrating local foster parents, including Loudoun’s Foster Parents of the Year Richard and Ashley Harper.
The Harpers were recognized during a May 19 event hosted by the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments.
The regional council recognized the Harpers for serving as “exemplary foster parents” to thirteen children in Loudoun over the past 7 years, noting that their “graceful demeanor has helped to create bridges between children in foster care and their biological families, promoting growth and healing.” And according to their citation, despite their own goal to grow their family through adoption, the Harpers have consistently prioritized the biological family’s needs over their own goals, fully supporting reunification or placements with relatives.
“The parents in our foster care program provide many young people in our community with guidance, stability, support and care,” stated Loudoun County Department of Family Services Director, Ina Fernández. “Foster parenting is a commitment unlike any other and we are so incredibly proud of, and thankful to, each and every one of our foster parents for supporting our youth.”
The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments partners with local and state child welfare agencies from 10 jurisdictions in the region to recognize outstanding foster parents annually. A video featuring the Harpers is online at vimeo.com/708282655.
The Loudoun County foster care program is currently supporting 40 children ranging in age from birth to 21 years old. Find out more about foster parenting and how to become a foster parent at loudoun.gov/fostercare.