For Sunrise Foster Care and Family Services Program Director Renita Tackett, her work at Sunrise Children's Services is both a calling and a ministry. She openly expressed what brings her joy and fulfillment on the job: "First, it is knowing that my work is God-ordained and provides me an awesome opportunity to be an agent of His love and healing to hurting children and families," she began, "and second, it is seeing positive changes in people's lives because of the work done through Sunrise."
Renita began her journey with Sunrise on Jan. 9, 1995. At that time, she was working as a state social worker while raising two small boys and pregnant with her third son. In Sunrise, she found an opportunity to provide for her family a better future. "A friend told me that Sunrise, then Kentucky Baptist Homes for Children, was looking for someone to start a foster care program for them in Eastern Kentucky; so I applied," she said. "I really liked the idea of working for a Christian agency, and saw it as a ministry opportunity as well as a good career move – the best of both worlds!"
Over the years, Renita has seen many adoptions come to fruition. "I love seeing forever families being created for children," said Renita. "And we have had other children who don't count in the numbers of adoptions, but whom we have had a hand with leading to a forever family, including my daughter, who was born to a teen foster child in a Sunrise home."
Along with the success stories, struggles also come; and in those times, Renita turns to her Sunrise family and her God. "We have worked together for years and provide a support base of prayer, friendship and encouragement for each other in our struggles," she said. "Ultimately, I try to remember Philippians 3:13-14, pressing on ahead to win the ultimate prize of heaven!"
For Renita, the focus is on positively impacting children and showing them a better way than what they experienced in an abusive and neglectful family. "They can then raise their own children in a way that was modeled through their foster family, and change a negative generational cycle," shared Renita. "So, fostering not only impacts one child, but generations of families. What a legacy for a foster parent to leave behind!"
If you would like to learn more about Sunrise Foster Care and how you can leave behind a legacy of hope and healing, contact us at 855.33.iCARE or visit us online at sunrise.org/foster-care.
David Lyninger is the associate director of Communications at Sunrise Children's Services.