Disclaimer: All names and images have been changed to protect people’s identities.

Bilal was born with meth in his system. In the hospital, the baby cried and vomited and twitched as he experienced the terrifying effects of withdrawal. Bilal was immediately removed from the care of his mother, who was uninterested in getting sober or maintaining contact with her newborn son.  

Through 30 Days to Family® – an intense, short-term intervention designed to increase the number of children placed with family or friends within the first 30 days of entering foster care – our experts began contacting Bilal’s family, beginning with his father, Omar. 

Like Bilal’s mother, Omar had been a drug user, but was newly committed to a sober lifestyle. However, Omar could not be considered to take custody of his son because he shared a home with his father, who had a history of sexual abuse. Our experts began to investigate Bilal’s extended family for options. 

At one month old, Bilal had already experienced meth withdrawal, been taken from his mother, and been thrust into the uncertainty of the foster care system. Relatives on both sides of his family fought for custody, but it was his aunt Nadia, his father’s sister, with whom he was placed. 

Without much time to prepare, Nadia was suddenly caring for a newborn. Bilal had experienced such a rocky start to life, and Nadia hoped to do right by him. She badly wanted to give him the safe, stable childhood he deserved, but she was filled with panic about her ability to provide everything he needed.  

Through Sammy’s Window, we made sure Nadia had baby clothes, formula, and diapers for Bilal. We also helped her get the proper training to become a licensed foster parent, and discussed the possibility of behavioral intervention later down the road. The support Nadia received from FosterAdopt Connect calmed her nerves and filled her with hope. 

After just 21 days, Bilal’s case was closed.  

Your charitable donations makes it possible for FosterAdopt Connect to operate programs like 30 Days to Family®, which leads to faster reunification with family and a lower likelihood of reentering foster care. Thanks to you, children like Bilal can receive the love and stability they deserve.