Username Post: Foster Child "Lifebook" suggestions        (Topic#1592729)
New Kid On the Block
Posts: 2
Joined: 12-07-13

Hi -

Our church is working on a project with a local foster child agency and I am looking for some advice.

Background: The foster care agency has requested help from me to gather scrapbooking supplies to create "lifebooks" for the foster kids whose parental rights have been terminated. Often, these kids come into foster care with nothing except the clothes on their backs. So, once they are in the system long enough, the social workers work with the kids to put together a scrapbook/lifebook for them to help tell the child's story. They use it in therapy sessions with the kids, etc., and it often becomes an important memory item for them. They need supplies to create these lifebooks.

Anyway, I am a "non scrapbooker" so I thought I would ask for some help from you. I have to put together a request for our congregation to gather supplies for this agency. The most they told me was that they use 12X12 albums.

So, I could either put out a request for a "kit" to be put together by someone in our congregation (i.e. go out and buy a 12X12 album, 2 sheets of X, 1 type of Y, etc.) or I could ask for the piece parts separately.

Advice? What are the key scrapbooking items I should ask for from our church members so that appropriate scrapbooks can be made for these kids?
Does it make sense to ask people to assemble a "kit" or should I just ask for X,Y,Z and let people shop for piece parts?

Any advice is greatly appreciated (total newbie to this). Thanks for any replies.


 
andrea m
Diva
Posts: 8442
Joined: 04-27-10
andrea m
In response to pemberly

This sounds like an amazing thing to be doing.

I m not sure how much I can help with this but I would ask for donations of certain things. Having a bunch of people who do not scrapbook make kits might be a little confusing to some people.

If the supplies are going to this organization maybe you could ask for some examples of more specific things they are looking for. I know a lot of stores sale paper packs on sale at great prices. I also know the albums themselves can become quit expensive so I am sure donations of albums would be appreciated.

Without a little more info its hard to make a lot of suggestions.


 
kiyawinn
Guru
Posts: 2064
Joined: 04-24-11
kiyawinn
In response to pemberly

I am in the process of applying to be a foster parent and I've seen an example of life books in our training class...
Every foster parent is responsible for creating and/or adding to the child's lifebook.
Basically it is a scrapbook of events, photos, schoolwork, scout badges, sports etc. of that child since arriving in foster care. It gives the child memories and connections in their life.
You could purchase a bunch of 12x12 albums and some papers and some stickers or you could purchase an album that comes with its own paper etc. Michaels has such albums....
I would keep it pretty simple as most of the foster parents do not have scrap booking experience either and it often ends up as mostly a photo album....
FYI, they call it a lifebook as "scrap" book can have a negative connotation to the child.....


 
kiyawinn
Guru
Posts: 2064
Joined: 04-24-11
kiyawinn
In response to pemberly

Sorry double post


Edited by kiyawinn on 12-08-13 06:54 AM. Reason for edit: No reason given.


 
Mary W.
Expert
Posts: 1485
Joined: 01-01-06
Mary W.
In response to kiyawinn

I'm thinking if you ask for donations of specific items, you could then put together kits for each family/child. For example, ask them to donate one or more of the following:

12 x 12 albums
12 x 12 paper
adhesive
scissors
stickers

Then once you have the donations, you can put together a kit consisting of each of those items.

Hope that helps a little!


 
Ms. Fit
Veteran
Posts: 499
Joined: 02-27-07
Ms. Fit
In response to Mary W.

As mentioned above, it would probably be best to stick to basics; e.g., albums that already have page protectors in them, scissors, and lots of adhesive. After that, a package of various colors of card stock, stickers and acid free pens for journaling and doodling. Mary's idea of individuals donating specific items and then kits being assembled later from the collected materials sounds very practical. It would be much easier for the donors who are not familiar with scrapping. Tell the donors to check their Sunday papers for coupons for hobby stores like Michaels and Hobby Lobby in order to stretch their funds.


 
Lauri D
Diva
Posts: 6344
Joined: 03-12-09
Lauri D
In response to Ms. Fit

Maybe talk to the agency about a Smashbook, It might be easier for foster kids to pack it around with them than a 12x12 album and supplies like papercutters, adhesives, and other accessories. It just might be more simple in the long run.

As far as donations, maybe check with a local scrapbook store for suggestions what would be a good starter kit for this project. Also, sometime they have die cut machines you can use for free if you buy the paper from their store. Maybe you can get volunteers to help you spend the day cutting fonts & images.


 
Juansmom
Guru
Posts: 2354
Joined: 03-15-12
Juansmom
In response to Lauri D

My friend who was a long-time foster parent once told me that many kids don't even come with a suitcase...their belongings are in shopping bags...so maybe the lifebook contents could be given in an iris box?? Ready to carry n store...n they can put memorabilia or a notebook in there too.

I suggest a pack of markers or pens or even crayons depending on age, scissors, glue sticks ( for convenience), a small notebook (I love marble composition books!) and some cardstock. Stickers or glittery stuff sounds good...but maybe not so much for boys...

Of course as I type this I am thinking maybe these kids can use this stuff as school supplies as well...


 
New Kid On the Block
Posts: 2
Joined: 12-07-13
In response to Juansmom

Thanks for all the replies - it is greatly appreciated. I think I will give a list of items from the ones you suggested and let people choose what they want to donate (with an emphasis on the albums being the most desirable for the agency.)

Thanks again! Very helpful.


 
RedSquirrel
Diva
Posts: 5756
Joined: 05-09-09
RedSquirrel
In response to pemberly

You've got some great responses here. I can't add anything except that this is an awesome thing you're doing. Good for you, and good luck!


 
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