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Episode 237: Foster Care & Baseball (w/ Emily Cole)

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Foster care and baseball. On the surface, these two things don’t sound related at all, but my guest this week would beg to differ.

Emily Cole is the co-owner with her husband, Jesse, of the Savannah Bananas, a baseball team based in Savannah, Georgia. Their vision is to make baseball fun, put fans first, and always entertain.

In addition to owning and operating a baseball team, Emily and Jesse are also biological, foster, and adoptive parents. They even use their baseball platform to further impact the foster care community through their nonprofit, Bananas Foster. Emily is passionate about helping the foster care community by celebrating and advocating for those involved.

In this episode, you’ll hear how baseball and foster care collide in Emily’s life, a vision for the future of foster care, how vital it is to have your village established as a foster parent, and so much more!

TAKEAWAYS FROM TODAY’S CONVERSATION:

1. Foster care isn’t easy.

During training to become a foster parent, you learn that you have to be simultaneously preparing for reunification and for termination. Living in this tension is complex and heavy. As we navigate this tension, it’s important that we cheer for restoration and hold on to hope.

“It’s this turmoil inside yourself that says, ‘What are you rooting for?’ It felt like what we were rooting for changed on a daily basis.

2. Set yourself up for success.

It’s important to rally your people around you before you become a foster parent. You are going to need help after your first placement when you have extra doctor visits, transportation requirements for family visits, or even when you need meals as you’re helping a child adjust to a new home and a new routine. Be sure to communicate with your village in advance some of the ways they can support you.

“Please get your village set up, get them prepared. They don’t have to be ready to be a foster parent themselves, but they are going to need to know what you will need from them.”

3. Be a supportive community.

Just as you received support, we also need to be the supportive community for others. And if you haven’t found that community, it may be that you need to be the one to make the first move. Introduce yourself to a foster parent, ask how you can pray for them, and ask what tangible need you can help meet. A supportive community is a place where you can go to both receive and give support.

“Have the guts to do that and to go first.”

SPREAD THE WORD!

We hope this episode has helped you wherever you are on your foster care journey. That’s the goal! If so, will you tell others?

Share this post or rate the podcast on Apple Podcasts (or wherever you listen) and leave us a brief review

Meet Our Guest

Emily Cole is a biological parent, foster parent, adoptive parent, and owner along with her husband, Jesse, of the Savannah Bananas, a baseball team based in Georgia. Emily learned about the need for foster families as a teen and into her college years. In 2020, Emily and Jesse became licensed foster parents. Today, they use their baseball platform to further impact the foster care community through Bananas Foster. Emily is passionate about helping the world of foster care by advocating for everyone involved.

Foster Parents, check with your agency to see if listening to this podcast will count toward your foster care training hours!

 

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