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Foster Parents Throughout West Virginia Gather for Training and Inspiration at KVC Conference

This weekend, over 500 children and families from across West Virginia will come together for KVC West Virginia’s Resource Family Conference (RFC). The gathering takes place December 11-12 at Glade Springs Resort in Daniels, West Virginia and is a unique training opportunity for kinship, foster and adoptive families who are caring for children who are temporarily in foster care due to abuse, neglect, parental drug use or other family challenges. The conference occurs simultaneously in three other cities including Overland Park, Kansas; Lincoln, Nebraska; and Lexington, Kentucky. Portions of the event are simulcast among all four locations for a total audience of more than 2,000 people.

Each RFC features an inspirational keynote speaker, typically someone who was in foster care as a child and has achieved success in adulthood. This year, families will hear from veteran newsman Dominic Carter, a journalist with Verizon Fios/RNN News who has been described as the best political reporter working in New York television today. Carter’s book, “No Momma’s Boy,” chronicles his triumphant struggle to overcome years of childhood abuse from his mother and her mental illness as a chronic paranoid schizophrenic while growing up in the housing projects in South Bronx, New York. Past keynote speakers include country music artist Jimmy Wayne and author Mark Anthony Garrett. Parents and older youth will enjoy Mr. Carter’s message while children enjoy activities such as Camp Glade, face painting and laser tag.

Guardian ad Litem Bob Noone and his wife psychotherapist Beth Hughes will also speak at KVC West Virginia’s RFC about the challenges and legal process of adoption, as well as how trauma can affect family dynamics. The Noones hail from Logan, WV and Bob has been very involved in many adoptions of children cared for by KVC West Virginia. The couple have also spoken to local community groups, KVC foster parents and staff about child welfare issues.

Last year, 592 children were supported in KVC WV foster families and 42 children were matched with adoptive families. Since beginning participation in the adoption process, KVC West Virginia has played a role nearly 130 adoptions. KVC Health Systems – the parent organization to KVC West Virginia – is recognized nationally for integrating trauma-informed care and behavioral healthcare into child welfare.

KVC raises private funds to fully-underwrite the hotel, meal and training costs of each annual conference. Generous companies, foundations and individuals in the community make the RFC possibly by sponsoring and attending fundraising events hosted by KVC Health Systems and its subsidiaries throughout the year.

“The Resource Family Conference is something that many of the children and teens in foster care look forward to all year long,” said B. Wayne Sims, CEO of KVC Health Systems for the past 35 years and creator of the event. “We’re proud to be able to provide this benefit to our foster families, and it simply wouldn’t be possible without the generous businesses, families and individuals who partner with KVC to make it happen.”

This year’s event is sure to be full of fun for all ages. Children and families can bowl, swim, visit Santa’s Workshop, and engage in food and fellowship. All foster, adoptive, and biological children will receive a gift that Santa has picked especially for them. KVC West Virginia would like to thank all of the agencies, individuals, and community groups who have made gifts for our children and made this year’s RFC possible!

Learn more at www.kvc.org/rfc or contact Kristi Ferrell at krferrell@kvc.org for more information.