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Foster mom has been helping kids for 20 years

June 7, 2014 • Local News

Linda Nasrallah works with a foster child recently while at Peak Treatment Foster Care. Linda has been a foster parent in Roswell for 20 years, shaping the lives of dozens of troubled youths. (Jeff Tucker Photo)

 

Being a foster treatment care mother is a labor of love for Linda Nasrallah.

She has been a foster parent in Roswell for 20 years, taking into her home about 45 children over the years for foster care treatment.

It all started in 1995 when she was driving a school bus, Nasrallah explained.

“I drove a bus out at Sunset (Elementary School) and there were a lot of troubled children there, especially this one family, and I wanted to help them out more than what I could do as a bus driver,” she said.

“It just so happened that I saw the advertisement from the Peak (Treatment Foster Care) needing foster parents, so I applied. And it just so happened that when I got done training, I met this mother, and it was the little boy I had wanted to help in the first place. He was my first foster child.”

Linda and her husband, Gaby, are parents of four grown children, ages 30 to 38. They also have nine grandchildren. Linda said being a foster parent is like a grandmother in perpetuity. She said the younger foster children call her “Meme,” as her own grandchildren do.

“I’m their ‘meme,’ because my grandchildren call me ‘meme,’” she said. “So I’m more like a grandparent. The children come to our house for three days. The children, if they really don’t want to stay, they really don’t have to. We’re not allowed to keep them a long time because of the insurance, because we’re supposed to help them and they move on to something else.

“I’ve had them maybe nine months. I’ve had one as long as 18 months.”

Linda said she usually cares for two children, but has had as many as four treatment foster children at one time. She and her husband provide foster care treatment for children that are emotionally unstable or “need some extra help.” Sometimes, the children can be challenging, she said.

“Treatment foster care is for the emotionally, physically abused and neglected children,” Linda said. “They’re mad sometimes. They get very mad sometimes because they don’t want to be with you. They want to be home. I just Login to read more

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