Former Foster Youth Creates A Hopeful Legacy As A Foster / Adoptive Dad

Editor’s Note: Parts of this post were inspired by Barry Farmer’s story on the AdoptUSKids blog… Barry will be a keynote on America’s Kids Belong’s upcoming FosterCon Webinar Series for the event called Fostering Primer on July 23. Learn more and reserve your seat here.

Father’s Day is a special occasion to celebrate and honor the amazing dads who have made a difference in our lives. One remarkable father is Barry Farmer,, whose journey as a single foster and adoptive dad is truly inspiring. He has adopted three boys and motivates others to do the same.

Raised by his loving grandparents and guided by the unwavering support of his third-grade teacher, Mrs. Simms-Morton, Barry recognized the importance of positive role models in his own upbringing. Their influence instilled in him the values of hard work, ambition and giving back to others.

Barry’s path to becoming a foster parent began at 17 when he wrote in his journal, “I want to adopt a child from foster care.” When he turned 20, he answered an ad seeking foster parents in his local Virginia newspaper.

Now in his 30s, Barry has become a beacon of hope for children in need. Drawing from his experiences, Barry shares valuable advice for men and their families who engage fostering or adoption.

“Just do it. Figure out your routine and see if your job is flexible. You can do it if you have a village behind you.”

Barry Farmer (source: Trinity Youth Services)

Message To Foster Dads on Father’s Day

1. Embrace Compassion.

Barry emphasizes the importance of approaching fostering and adoption with a compassionate heart. Most of the kids who come into care have not experienced a compassionate father. “Recognize that the children in your care may have experienced trauma and need understanding and patience,” Barry says. “By showing empathy and connection, you can create a safe and supportive place to belong for them to heal and thrive.”

2. Manage Expectations.

It’s essential to manage your expectations when embarking on the journey of fostering or adoption. Understand that not every day will be perfect, and there will be challenges along the way. However, by focusing on the positive moments and having realistic expectations, you can navigate the ups and downs with resilience and perseverance.

3. Put in the Hard Work.

Creating a loving and nurturing environment for children from traumatic backgrounds requires dedication and hard work. Barry encourages families to “put in the effort to establish routines, provide stability, and offer consistent love and support. By investing time and energy, you can make a profound and lasting impact on the lives of the children in your care.”

Barry firmly believes foster care adoption is a remarkable process that brings families together. It involves opening your home and heart to complete strangers and witnessing something beautiful unfold—a family coming together. He encourages everyone to embrace the transformative power of this journey and cherish the opportunity to provide a stable and loving home for children who long for a sense of belonging.

So, to all the men who are unsure if fostering is right for them, Barry gives an invitation to step forward, answer the call to make a difference, and build a brighter future for the children who yearn for stability, love, and a place to call home.

Join America’s Kids Belong and Barry Live July 23 for our first webinar of FosterCon 2024! Register here.

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