According to Sharlyn Remrey, children in the foster care system move an average of seven different times.
Their clothes and possessions are frequently piled into garbage bags and plastic sacks, as they make the transition from home to home.
“A lot of kids go into foster care every year,” she said. “They take a big garbage bag and shove all their things in.”
A former foster child herself, Remrey said something as simple as a suitcase can go a long way.
A youth group at Remrey’s church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is participating for the first time in the Suitcases for Foster Kids program. Young Women’s Program members will spend the next month collecting suitcases, duffel bags and backpacks, all of which will be donated to area children in foster care.
“The kids at the church were looking for a service project, and I thought this would be great,” Remrey said.
Nearly any kind of bag or suitcase would be acceptable, Remrey said, including those that are lightly used. However, she said that they should be in good condition and look nice.
Those interested in donating a suitcase can call Remrey at (563) 593-0534. Suitcases and bags collected will be stored at the church until April 22, when they will be delivered to Department of Human Services workers and distributed to area children in foster care.