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In Connecticut, on any given day, there are hundreds of youth who need loving foster homes, and most are over the age of 13 years old. May is National Foster Care Month, a time to consider the many youth in need of loving homes, especially teens.

“Prospective foster and adoptive parents often express a preference for younger children,” said Sharon Pendleton-Ponzani, LCSW, director, Wheeler Foster Care Services. “But nationally, and here in Connecticut, there is a critical need for families for teens.

“The experience of fostering a teen is different but can be just as rewarding,” Pendleton-Ponzani added. “It’s an important, worthwhile process of helping with important life tasks such as helping youth enroll in higher education, find stable housing, securing employment, establishing healthy relationships, and so much more.”

Studies show that teens who age out of foster care or who do not have more permanent, loving attachments are at increased risk for homelessness, young parenthood, low educational attainment, high unemployment rates, human trafficking, and other adverse adult outcomes.

To learn more about becoming a foster parent through Wheeler, contact Foster Care Specialist Allison Casinghino at 860.637.5586, or send an email to

About Wheeler’s Foster Care Programs
Wheeler’s Foster Care programs, funded by the Connecticut Department of Children and Families, provide 24-hour support to families and youth. Wheeler’s programs provide a higher level of care and resources, including supports to meet the needs of children and youth and help them heal from abuse, neglect, trauma, and more.

For information about Wheeler Foster Care opportunities, call 860.793.7277, email or visit

About Wheeler
Wheeler provides comprehensive solutions that address complex health issues, providing individuals, families and communities with accessible, innovative care that encourages health, recovery, and growth at all stages of life. Our integrated approach to primary and behavioral health, education, and recovery creates measurable results, positive outcomes, and hopeful tomorrows for more than 50,000 individuals across Connecticut each year. Learn more: