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Spring 2016

Toys 4 Birthdays The Asheville Civitan Club has been gathering used and new donated toys for Kinship children for caregivers to give them on their birthdays. If you are interested in receiving these toys then contact Gabrielle Keath and let her know (828-350-5197).

Cakes 4 Kids Biltmore Baptist has been a long time partner with the Kinship Program, and we have been so grateful for their love and support over the years. The Ron Howard Support Group headed up by Ron and Juanita Sutphin are in charge of a ministry called Cakes 4 Kids, where they make sure our Kinship Children get a lovely cake for their birthday! Their cakes are beautiful cakes with colors or designs that are specific to that child on their birthday. If you have a Kinship Child in your home with a birthday coming, please contact the Kinship Care Coordinator, Gabrielle Keath, and let her know that you are interested (828-350-5197).

Biltmore Baptist Church

The Asheville Civitan Club will deliver the toys to Bair and you can arrange delivery with her from there. Birthdays are a time to celebrate, don’t miss out!

Spring Break Groceries This spring, Emmaus Church shared their love with our Kinship families by providing many of them with a bag of groceries while schools were out on Spring Break! What a wonderful blessing they were to so many of our families. It was another reminder that our Kinship families are so special and that there are people out there who admire all that you do on a daily basis in taking care of your Kinship children. Thank you for all that you do, and thank you Emmaus for loving our families!

Bair’s Asheville office at Executive Park

What is The Bair Foundation & What is Kinship? The Bair Foundation is a child and family ministry with nearly 50 years of experience in the field of child welfare. Our Asheville office has been providing therapeutic foster care to local abused and neglected youth since 2009. We recruit and retain quality homes in Asheville and the surrounding areas that are able to provide structure, stability, safety, and love to children in the foster care system. The Bair Foundation actively recruits teen homes and families who are willing to take sibling groups, as that is where the need is greatest. The objective of our ministry is to strengthen families and ultimately provide permanency for these children, either through returning home, foster-to-adopt, legal guardianship, or kinship care. Kinship Care is a program designed to help support a child who resides outside of his or her own home, either temporarily or for the long term, with a relative, godparents, stepparents or any adult who has a “kinship bond” with a child. Kinship Care is an option that allows a child to grow into adulthood in a familiar family environment instead of being placed in foster care. THANK YOU Kinship families for providing transitional care for your “kin” while their biological parents complete the steps necessary so their children can return home.

Questions? Gabrielle Keath, Kinship Coordinator The Bair Foundation Executive Park Suite 108 - Bldg. 1 Asheville, NC 28801 (828) 350-5197 (877) 213-0723 toll free (828) 350- 5199 fax email: Buncombe County Dept. of Social Services 40 Coxe Avenue, PO Box 7408 Asheville, NC 28802 (828) 250-5500 (828) 250-6235 fax Your support is vital! If you would like to help/give/hold a donation drive please contact Gabrielle Keath.

Kinship Resources The Macaroni Club As you and the kiddo’s look for something to do on the weekend, keep in mind that Macaroni Kid is a great resource for some local activities that are going on in your community! Macaroni Kid is a free weekly newsletter and website that delivers news on all the kid and family friendly events going on locally. Go to the website and sign-up so that you can have the scoop on planning your weekend fun! Big Brothers & Big Sisters Are you looking for a mentor for your child this school year? Youth ages 6-14 from single parent homes or living with relatives/ foster parents are eligible for Big Brothers Big Sisters. The children and caregivers must be interested in the program. Participation is need-based and other criteria are assessed as well. Volunteers are all screened by a national criminal background check, have a personal interview with BBBS staff, three references, and mentor training. Children and their Big Brother or Big Sister enjoy all sorts of activities in the community! For more information call (828) 253-1470

Food for Thought School Breakfast & Lunch Program In alliance with the Buncombe County and Asheville City School Systems, the Food for thought School Breakfast and Lunch Program provides assistance for any and all children who cannot afford breakfast and/or lunch during the school day and are not eligible for the federal free or reduced lunch program. All children are eligible for the program and referrals are made to Eblen by area schools. Each child enrolled receives a prepaid lunch card, the same as all other children prepaying for their lunch, and the schools then bill the Eblen Charities. The children do not know where the cards come from, so they maintain their dignity and are not identified or signaled out as someone in need.

Being a Kinship Caregiver Can Be Lonely...


Guy Winch offers advice...

e’ve all felt lonely from time to time. But sometimes, things can get out of hand. Psychologist Guy Winch lays out some straightforward tips to deal with the pain of deep loneliness. Loneliness is a subjective feeling. You may be surrounded by other people, friends, family, workmates — yet still feel emotionally or socially disconnected from those around you. Other people are not guaranteed to shield us against the raw emotional pain that loneliness inflicts. But raw emotional pain is only the beginning of the damage loneliness can cause. It has a huge impact on our physical health as well. Loneliness activates our physical and psychological stress responses and suppresses the function of our immune systems. This puts us at increased risk for developing all kinds of illness and diseases, including cardiovascular disease. Shockingly, the long-term risk chronic loneliness poses to our health and longevity is so severe, it actually increases risk of an early death by 26%. There are many paths to loneliness. Some enter loneliness gradually. A friend moves away, another has a child, a third works a seventy-hour work week, and before we know it our social circle, the one we had relied upon for years, ceases to exist. Others enter loneliness more suddenly, when they leave for college or the military, lose a partner to death or divorce, start a new job, or move to a new town or country. And for some, chronic illness, disability or other limiting conditions have made loneliness a lifelong companion. Unfortunately, emerging from loneliness is far more challenging than we realize, as the psychological wounds it inflicts create a trap from which it is difficult to break free. Loneliness distorts our perceptions, making us believe the people around us care much less than they actually do, and it makes us view our existing relationships more negatively, such that we see them as less meaningful and important than we would if we were not lonely. These distorted perceptions have a huge ripple effect, creating self-fulfilling prophecies that ensnare many. Feeling emotionally raw and convinced of our own undesirability and of the diminished caring of others, we hesitate to reach out even as we are likely to respond to overtures from others with hesitance, resentment, skepticism or desperation, effectively pushing

away the very people who could alleviate our condition. “As a result, many lonely people withdraw and isolate themselves to avoid risking further rejection or disappointment. And when they do venture into the world, their hesitance and doubts are likely to create the very reaction they fear. They will force themselves to attend a party but feel so convinced others won’t talk to them, they spend the entire evening parked by the hummus and vegetable dip with a scowl on their face, and indeed, no one dares approach — which for them only verifies their fundamental undesirability. Breaking free of loneliness and healing our psychological wounds is possible, but it involves a decision — a decision to override the gut instinct telling you to stay away and to play it safe by isolating yourself. Instead, you must do three things that require both courage and a leap of faith: Take action: Accept that loneliness is impacting your perceptions and understand that people are likely to respond more positively than you expect. If you feel socially disconnected, go through your phone and email address books, and your social media contacts, and make a list of people you haven’t seen or spoken to for a while. If you feel emotionally disconnected, make a list of five people you’ve been close to in the past. Reach out to them and suggest getting together and catching up. Yes, it will feel scary to do so, and yes, you will worry about it being awkward or uncomfortable. That is why it is also important to: Give the benefit of the doubt: It is fair to assume that someone who enjoyed your company in the past would likely enjoy spending time with you in the present as well. Yes, maybe they’ve been out of touch, maybe they never called after promising to see you soon, but you must accept that the reason they’ve been out of touch or the reason you haven’t been close lately might have nothing to do with you. In all likelihood, it is their busy lives, their competing priorities, stresses or opportunities that led to the “disconnect” between you. In many cases, there might not even be a disconnect — in other words, the reluctance you assume on their part might not even exist. So reach out to the people on your list but remember to: Approach with positivity: Yes, you fear rejection and yes, you’re not in the best frame of mind, but this is one situation where it might be important to fake it. When contacting the people on your list, try to put yourself into a positive mindset. Loneliness is extremely painful, but once you recognize the perceptual distortions it causes and the psychological trap it creates, you will be able to marshal your courage, take that leap of faith, and plan your escape. Freedom will be sweet once you do.

Introducing Shepherd William Keath I am proud to announce that Shepherd William Keath arrived on April 13th, 2016 at 3 lbs and 3 ounces. His arrival was 11 weeks earlier than anticipated but we clearly saw God’s grace on our lives as Shepherd thrived and grew stronger. He spent six weeks in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and surprised everyone with coming home earlier than expected. He is now growing bigger and stronger every day and bringing lots of joy to his parents’ lives. Thank you for your prayers for our family over the past few months, and thank you for your understanding over my unexpected departure from Kinship for those few months. I know Lannon did an excellent time in my absence and I was grateful for everyone’s support.

- Gabrielle Keath, Kinship Coordinator

Family Group Night allows each family member to attend a group that addresses their needs! Family Group Nights are designed for children with special needs and their siblings to connect with peers in their community. The Kinship Program is joining their support group and we will have our own Kinship Caregiver support group where we can talk about the common challenges we all face. No matter what challenge your child faces, we believe they have gifts that they can share with others in the group they attend. We encourage families in surrounding counties to join us! Please RSVP! Signing up helps us ensure enough food for dinner and volunteers for our groups.

Buncombe County Family Group Topic: Back to School Planning 1st Tuesday of each month Date & Time: Tuesday, August 2, 2016 5:30 - 6:00 pm Dinner 6:00 - 7:00 pm Group Meetings Address: Mission Reuter Outpatient Center 11 Vanderbilt Park Dr., Asheville, NC Follow us on Facebook! TheBairFoundationNC

Kinship Connection Spring 2016  

Kinship Connection newsletter for Buncombe County, North Carolina.

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