Supportive Gifts for Kids in Care

Supportive Gifts for Kids in Care As parents, many of us have spent holidays watching our children open boxes and boxes, along with bags and bags of gifts from us. As Americans, we immerse ourselves in holiday buying and giving, sparing no gift idea. As foster and kinship caregivers, this desire to inundate our children and youth with more and more gifts just may hit overdrive: we know the child’s background and experiences, and we are aware of the hurts and pains they have felt. Knowing their history can contribute to our longing to alleviate their sorrow through gift giving.   I am not going to suggest that you limit how much you buy this year. Instead, I would like to suggest specific gifts for the child or youth in your care. These items can better support youth during the difficult moments away from their parents and family members. Consider the following gifts this year.  
  • Medium or large stuffed animaYouth of all ages (yes, up to midtwenties) love to touch, hug, and carry a soft, billowy stuffie. They make for great pillows and warm companions.
  • Sound machine.Children and youth often struggle to sleep well in a new bed or home. A sound machine offers various sounds to calm and soothe, assisting with sleep.
  • Wall projector night-light.Children and youth can become fearful in new environments; night-lights can help them feel more safe and secure in the dark.
  • Energy bracelets or necklaces.Youth over the age of seven can appreciate the significance of gems and stones that can offer them greater energy, calmness, luck, or magnetism. 
  • Colored time timer.Help youth understand time with the use of a sensory or color time timer. With the use of this clever tool, youth can practice caring for their own time and staying on schedule, building a sense of control and independence.