WELCH (AP) — McDowell County has the highest rate of child abuse and neglect in West Virginia, and the least number of foster homes for mistreated children.
West Virginia Public Broadcasting says the annual KIDS Count survey shows 46 percent of students in the county don’t live with their biological parents.
Joanne Boileau is regional director of the Children’s Home Society, and she says the need for foster families is great.
She says rampant drug abuse contributes to the problem. Boileau says the only family that was fostering children adopted two and are no longer taking in more kids.
Private agencies such Pressley Ridge don’t have foster homes in McDowell County, either.
Boileau urges people who think they can’t handle foster parenting to reconsider. Many underestimate their capacity to nurture.