By: WCTV Eyewitness News
June 7, 2017
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- WCTV and Werner Hyundai are teaming up to highlight local foster children and foster parents.
This is the Kling family's story.
The Kling family is a busy bunch. John, Melissa and their four children are all part of a bigger plan to help others in need.
"I kind of felt like we were called to it way before he was," says mom Melissa about her husband.
"She was way ready before I was," says dad John in response.
That “calling” was to become foster parents through Florida Baptist Children’s home.
"It’s like an adventure,” says John. “Every case is an adventure. Every case is different. Every kid is different."
Melissa knew she wanted to become a foster parent, when she was her child’s age.
"People think we're crazy what we do,” says John. “But it just fits our home."
Now Melissa, a mother of three and an adoption later, has got the entire family on board.
"It's enjoyable for me to know that I’m helping them with this," says Melissa’s son Jacob.
"One of the first things they told us was that your kids need to be on board,” says John. “If your kids are not on board, it's not going to work.”
Before taking the step to foster, the Klings made sure their oldest two children were ready.
"I think it's taught them a lot of empathy for other people," says Melissa.
"I was worried about our family. I was worried about our other kids, but actually it has changed our kids,” says John. “It changed them so quick. They’re a part of our process of accepting children."
Melissa says getting attached to the foster child is a common worry for those on the fence about fostering.
"For people who think they’d be too attached and wouldn't want to let them go, you're right,” says Melissa. “You'd be attached, but they need someone who will say 'you're worth every tear I cry.'"
"I’m going to shoot you straight... it's hard,” says John. “But it's nothing you can't do."
But they say the reward is great.
"They open up and you see their personalities,” says John. “You go ‘wow this kid is really special...this kid has got an amazing personality, an amazing life. He can do this with toys. He's got this amazing hand-eye coordination.’ My whole day is watching that."
"They don't have to worry about where they're going to sleep, what they're going to eat, how adults are going to treat them, or what's going to happen to them," says Melissa.
It’s a message they hope will hit home for future foster parents.
For more information on Florida Baptist Children’s home, visit www.fbchomes.org.