GAP cares for over 400 foster children annually in family style group homes in Tucson. Siblings are able to stay together while in care due to the larger size of our homes. GAP helps foster teens and young adults learn the life skills necessary to successfully “age out” of foster care and into adulthood with mentoring and independent living programs. To better deal with the root causes of the foster care crisis, GAP has begun visitation programs with the birth parents, as well as training and licensing of foster parents. It is our desire and goal to see healthy restoration of families when possible.
At the core of the Father’s and GAP’s heart is a love for children. God said in His word, “Suffer the little children to come unto me and forbid them not; for of such is the kingdom of God.” (KJV) GAP Ministries began by caring for foster children in one home, and that aspect of the ministry has grown to 14 family style group homes where the love of God is shared with the children each day. GAP is also licensing and training individuals and couples to care for foster children to increase the number of homes where these children can live and thrive while away from their own homes.
Learn More about Foster Care
GAP recruits, licenses, and certifies individuals and families who wish to provide excellent temporary foster care for and who wish to be a permanent home for abused and/or neglected children. We help families through the licensing and adoption process.
Once these parents are licensed and have children placed in their homes, the GAP Foster Care Program provides them with ongoing education and support they need to be successful with their fostering experience.
GAP has fourteen residential family-style large foster homes, called SPLASH Houses, where we care for children 0-21 years of age who are placed with us through the Department of Child Safety (DCS). It is our mission to shelter children who have been abused and neglected and to show them love and acceptance. We believe there is a Biblical mandate that requires us to defend the causes of the orphan, and to provide hope and healing.
Learn More about SPLASH
Teens & Young Adults
STEP, independent living for foster teens or young adults, is a new program of GAP Ministries to help young adults successfully transition into adulthood and “step” into their destiny with the support and encouragement of a team of mentors. STEP is a program of choices, coaching young adults to step into the right decisions that will take them where they desire to go in life. It is a multi-year program for 18-25 year olds who already have strong independent living skills, but need that last little boost into adulthood. The STEP program is designed to support young adults for as long as their transition requires. The Program Manager maintains contact with the youth and offers emotional support, as well as problem solving and supervision.
(Maturity Education Responsibility Growth Excellence) is for teens living in a SPLASH House. Licensed by the state of Arizona, the mission of this program is to improve the quality of life for 16-18 year olds in the foster system. We strive to empower them with the attitudes, knowledge, skills and practices to live independently in society, and to help them discover their potential.
transitional housing for at-risk teens and youth 18-25 years of age, is GAP’s newest program to assist foster teens and youth in the community, and enable them to STEP into their destiny with the support and encouragement of a team of mentors. STEP is a program of choices, coaching them to make the right decisions that will take them where they desire to go in life. GAP Ministries purchased the El Sol Apartments in 2014 through a generous grant by the Herrick Family Foundation. This small 16-unit complex houses up to 6 young adults, while the remaining 10 units help cover program costs. Young men and women are rewarded for good choices – going to college, working and other skills necessary for their success in life.
GAP Ministries will now be able to more effectively impact the foster care system with the goal of reunifying healthy families. The state of Arizona has licensed us in Visit Supervision between the children and their birth parents. It is our desire that as parents learn new methods and get needed help, they become successful in raising their own children and stopping the cycle at the root.
Family Mentoring: GAP is mentoring families in 4 local title one schools. Our desire is to see family structures strengthened in the midst of social-economic crises that these communities are facing.
To holistically care for foster children and their families, and to be part of the solution to see restoration of families whenever possible, GAP is contracted by the state of Arizona to provide court-ordered supervised visits between foster children and their biological parents. GAP provides a warm and inviting visitation experience when foster children meet and spend time with their biological families. Visits benefit both the child and the parents, and even reunited siblings, reassuring them that they are still connected to each other, giving them hope, and helping them learn new ways of interacting.
When a child first enters the foster care system, the biological parents are given certain tasks by the judge necessary to regain custody of their children. While the children are away from home in foster care, the families are allowed supervised visits. A social worker or agency staff member sits in with the family during the visits, which are held at the foster care agency, usually in a room dedicated for the use of family visits. The person supervising makes notes during the session, which helps social workers to see where the birth family needs to make improvements.
Children, no matter how difficult their histories' have been within their family, still love their mother & father, sisters & brothers. To be able to spend time with one another while the parents are working on their various issues makes a tremendous difference in the emotional well being of the children while in out-of-home care.
Recently, due to the growing numbers of children removed from their homes due to abuse or neglect, foster children have been sleeping in the offices of the Department of Child Safety (DCS). The state continues to work on solutions to meet the need for foster families for these children. Additionally, due to lack of supervised visit providers, children are meeting with their biological parents in the offices of their DCS caseworkers. This is not ideal by any means. It’s difficult for the caseworkers, and it’s not comfortable or inviting for the children and their families. It is almost impossible to have natural parent/child interactions, which are what the supervised visits are supposed to promote, in this kind of environment. GAP stepped up to become a provider for visits in 2015 because it is our goal whenever possible to facilitate the healthy restoration of families.
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