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The New Social Worker is the quarterly magazine for social work students and recent graduates, focusing on social work careers for those new to the profession. This blog is a companion to the free online magazine at http://www.socialworker.com.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Oh, baby. What a day!

MY DAY STARTED WITH A TRIP to one of our hospitals where we met a foster parent who was preparing to take home a newborn baby. The biological parent is incarcerated and there are no relatives with whom placement would be appropriate. The baby was so beautiful and healthy and was surrounded by a team of loving nurses and staff. They had nurtured and cared for the baby until the foster parent arrived.

This was a pretty intense experience. The foster parent's eyes filled with tears when the baby was brought out. The foster parent and a friend had brought everything a baby might need: a carrier, a new outfit for the day, and most of all love and affection.

My day ended at a youth detention center where a caseworker and I met with a 16-year-old teen whose fate is in limbo due to the parent's inability and perhaps unwillingness to care for the child. The caseworker and I could see many strengths in this young person, yet there are so many precarious circumstances that stand in the way of a healthy and happy future.

One day. Two unwanted children. One temporary solution. One frustrating situation.

It's down-on-my-knees-to-pray time...

~Ms. T. J.

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