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New Life Village (NLV) is an intergenerational community designed for families raising foster and adopted children. Its mission is to reduce the number of children in foster care by encouraging more families to adopt and by providing these adoptive families a loving, supportive place to call home. NLV residents have either adopted a child or are in the process of doing so. The Village was founded by Sister Claire LeBoeuf, CSC of the Congregation of the Sisters of Holy Cross. Sister Claire has spent her entire adult life advocating for abused and neglected children. Several seniors also call NLV home. They serve as surrogate grandparents and volunteers to the children and to the mission. The Village offers reduced rent on town-homes to assist these families. The Village also offers several onsite programs to support parents and children.
Both nationally and locally, the foster care system is filled with children who need to find a forever home. These kids have been through more than most of us can imagine and end up in foster care through no fault of their own. There are a little over 400,000 children in foster care in the United States. Of these children, approximately 2,000 are in out-of-home care right here in our own back yard. It costs taxpayers in Florida about $40,000 a year for every child who does not have a permanent home. Many older children end up living in group homes where they remain until they "age out" of the foster care system. Sadly, they are also at risk of substance abuse, teen pregnancy, homelessness, dropping out of school or losing their own children to foster care.
- Mariah Hayden
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