Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Fostering more than 600 children

Linda Herring, 75, always wanted a big family, but never dreamed she'd foster more than 600 children during almost 50 years. Nor was she a stay-at-home foster mom. She ran a home daycare for local families in Johnson County, Iowa, and worked as a night custodian at a nearby high school. She also volunteered as a first responder for nearly half-a-century. But everyone in Johnson County knew she never turned away a child, no matter what age, gender or special needs. She adopted three of her foster kids, and two of them have severe medical needs. Dani wasn't expected to live long after her birth. She's now 29 years old, but still totally dependent on others for care.

Herring says her inspiration for fostering is love. "I would just love my foster kids like they were my own, probably more than I should. I cried when the kids would leave my home, no matter how long they'd been there. It was so hard to say goodbye to them. I always questions, 'Why do I keep doing this?' because it was never easy to say goodbye to a child. But I kept doing it because I had so much love to give to those children in need."

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