In attending my grandson's Christmas program recently, I had the opportunity to observe and interact with three young Burleigh County foster children and their foster parents. That experience touched my heart, in keeping with this season of giving, knowing that a family unit had been established that will provide the needed care and safety for these children.

Foster parents are truly "Angels Among Us," for opening their homes to children who have been abused or neglected and are in need of the comfort and security that most children take for granted. Seeing a foster parent come to pick up a child who has been placed in emergency care is truly a moving experience. That child is sometimes crying, and nearly always scared and uncertain about what is going to happen to them. The reassuring words and a hand extended to theirs means everything at that moment.

Burleigh County is in need of additional foster homes, to provide that comfort and security, for either a short or extended time period. Being a foster parent will be a very gratifying and rewarding experience for anyone who is willing to extend that helping hand to assist in protecting children in our community. I would encourage anyone who may be interested to contact their local social services office.

Child welfare is everyone's business, in loosely quoting Ebenezer Scrooge. No better time to do so than in this season of giving, and no better way to give than with a helping hand to a child in need. God bless you, if you find it in your heart to make that commitment.

Chuck Isakson, Bismarck

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