Editor's Note: Window on the Clearwater has joined the Wednesday's Child network to help spread the word about children that are waiting for families to give them the loving care that they need. Each Wednesday we will profile a different child. For more information about Wednesday's Child and how you can be involved check the web site at: http://www.idahowednesdayschild.org/.
"My name is Onika, and I love school! My favorite subject is art. I wish I could go to school all year long. I love to sing and do tap dance and ballet. I also love macaroni and cheese with hot dogs. It's my favorite! I want to be a teacher when I grow up because being a teacher is fun."
Described as a "social butterfly," Onika is a smart girl who loves showing off her abilities at school. She is very smart, inquisitive, active, and enjoys talking. She can be very sweet and likes to please others. Onika enjoys coloring, drawing, riding her bike and puzzles. Her favorite doll is Raggedy Ann.
Onika's adoption team is searching for a couple or single parent that can provide the structure and routine in which she thrives. Because she loves to engage in conversation with adults anytime and anywhere, she will need parents who will encourage her social skills within safe boundaries. She enjoys all sorts of activities, but her teachers have found that she is highly motivated by computer time. She also burns a lot of her abundant energy playing Just Dance on the Wii.
Onika also needs a family environment where she can be the sole focus for a while. An emotionally secure couple with no pets would be ideal, especially if at least one parent has had some experience working with children who have experienced substantial abuse and neglect at an early age.
The ideal family for Onika will be one with no other children, or at least children who are nearly grown and out of the house. Caring for her requires a great deal of one-on-one focus. Onika's current foster mom loves her dearly and would love to adopt her, but Onika's need for that one-on-one attention is too much to maintain with her current children still at home. The ability to give one-on-one attention and affection to Onika is essential.
It will also be important that Onika's parents are realistic about the emotional and behavioral challenges ahead. She needs stable parents who have the understanding, commitment, humor and creativity to withstand day-to-day difficulties. Her family will need a strong support network, which should include adults who can provide occasional respite. This will prevent burnout for her parents. For this reason, a two-parent household is ideal; however, a single parent with a very strong support network will be considered.
Good emotional support will be so important to ensuring Onika is able to thrive. So too will be the ability to follow through with professional appointments and discipline strategies. With access to excellent support services, her parents can maintain commitment as they help her make sense of her past, present and future. With these resources in place, this "social butterfly" can take wing and soar!
Portrait by Matt Green from Barb Bergeson Studio Gallery
To find out more about Auston, adoption or becoming a foster parent, email the Idaho CareLine or call 1-800-926-2588. You may be asked to provide this reference number: 30487.
|Window on the Clearwater
P.O. Box 2444
Orofino, ID 83544