AUSTIN, Texas — According to the Austin-based nonprofit Miracle Foundation, 60% of foster parents drop out in the first year and 90% of agencies have trouble retaining case workers.
The foundation created an app called FosterShare to help construct more stable environments for children in foster care.
Destiny Bowers is proud to be a foster parent.
"She gets all this love, that if I didn't say yes and step up, I don't know where she'd be," Bowers said.
Bowers gave birth to two children of her own and currently fosters a third. Being a foster parent comes with a number of responsibilities, often leading to high turnover rates.
"They want to know what the baby is eating and how often. The sleeping habits," Bowers explained. "...You also have CPS and the foster agency coming to your house monthly and you're doing paperwork."
Bowers has been using the FosterShare app to help address some of her administrative needs, like documenting and accessing resources.
The app recently launched across the Lone Star State with plans to expand beyond Texas next year.
"Out of all the things you have to do for foster, it does relieve a little burden," Bowers said.
Leslie Beasley is the CEO of Miracle Foundation. She says the high turnover rate of foster parents and case workers in the U.S. negatively impacts children in the foster care system.
"So a child bounces an average of seven times and the negative effects are so detrimental," Beasley said. "...What that means is a child gets so far behind in school that it becomes a pipeline to prison, a pipeline to homelessness, pipeline to suicide."
With at least 1,500 families now using the app, Bowers hopes their efforts encourage more parents to step up and help.
"We need more foster families and these children are so worth it," Bowers said.