The Indiana Department of Child Services (DCS) and the Indianapolis Colts will team up with The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 N. Meridian St., to sponsor a day of fun for Indiana foster families on July 20 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The event features free admission for licensed foster families, a chance to visit with BLUE, the Colts mascot, and get autographs from the Colts cheerleaders. In addition, the first 50 foster children to register for the celebration will receive a Books for Youth backpack filled with 25 age-appropriate books.
The event is one of many across the state to demonstrate appreciation to the 5,000 licensed foster families that care for the more than 9,700 Indiana children currently in foster care.
“When children, through no fault of their own, are victims of abuse or neglect we often must make the difficult decision to remove them from their families,” said James W. Payne, DCS director.
“If we are unable to locate appropriate relatives, we rely on foster families to provide the safety, stability and love these children desperately need during this most vulnerable time. These families work with DCS staff, the courts, medical professionals, other social welfare professionals and more to ensure the ongoing well-being of these children entrusted to their care. Our partnerships with the Indianapolis Colts and The Children’s Museum provide opportunities for these children to enjoy educational and special moments that will last a lifetime,” he added.
During Foster Family Day, licensed foster parents can renew or register for their free one-year membership to The Children’s Museum. This membership includes two adults, all foster children as well as any biological children under 21 living in the same household. With the free membership, foster families can enjoy all the wonders of the world’s largest children’s museum for an entire year.
Indianapolis Colts cheerleaders will sign autographs from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and foster families will have a chance to explore the museum with BLUE from noon to 1 p.m. Colts in Motion, the official traveling museum of the Indianapolis Colts, will also be available on the museum’s front plaza from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Children’s Museum visitors can participate in the Foster Family Day celebration by bringing a new or gently used book to donate to Books for Youth. Book donors can save $3 off their admission price (July 20 only; one discount per family). Visitors will also be able to purchase the limited edition BLUE backpack at the Children’s Museum Gift Shop. Backpacks are only $22 and for each one purchased, a Books for Youth backpack filled with 25 age-appropriate books will be donated to a foster child.
For more information, call The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis at (317) 334-3322.