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Nearly 10 Years into Foster Care, One Child Reconnects with His Long-Lost Mother

KENTUCKY: When Jakob* was 7, he witnessed his father inflict horrific physical abuse upon one of his siblings. Jakob’s mother lost her parental rights due to her failure to attend crucial court hearings. It was these tragic events that led Jakob and his siblings to be placed in foster care. 

Because no foster homes would take in three children, Jakob endured a heart-wrenching separation from his siblings. Jakob would go on to move through a series of placements, ranging from residential facilities and foster homes to psychiatric hospitals. Understandably, his behavior grew more difficult to manage, and because of this, the prospect of finding stability seemed impossible. 

Jakob’s life and future looked bleak until James entered his life. James, a recruiter for Wendy’s Wonderful Kids® (WWK) from Kentucky’s Cabinet for Health and Family Services, decided, with support from his boss, to do “something different” than adoption or long-term foster care. James first utilized the Connect Our Kids’ People Search, which immediately located Jakob’s biological family, starting with his mother. He then used Lexis Nexis to cross-reference the contact information for the mother and all the other relatives he found on People Search. As part of his diligent search for the child-focused recruitment model as a WWK recruiter, James could contact family members he found on Connect Our Kids, including Jakob’s long-lost mother. James had this to say about Jakob’s reaction to his findings:

“He’s excited to have contact… and he has been hopeful and joyful to have contact with his mother.”

Jakob’s challenging behaviors have improved since reconnecting with his birth family. Therapeutic visits with his mother and regular phone calls have also played a pivotal role in Jakob’s transformation, along with obtaining childhood photos and videos of him dancing as a kid. This would not have happened without James’ diligent research on Connect Our Kids and his active outreach. One of Jakob’s maternal aunts is now taking in Jakob. 

To directly create more outcomes like Jakob’s, please donate HERE. Connect Our Kids is a nonprofit dedicated to leveraging technology to find families, build connections, and make a community for children in the foster care system.

*Names have been changed to protect privacy.

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