SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)— In Marin County, the department of health and human services are looking for people willing to become foster parents. The department says what they need most are people willing to help teenagers make the transition into adulthood.

Farah Bahtia was 15-years-old when she became a foster child.

“I was in juvenile hall or I was placed in foster homes,” Bahtia said.

It was tough for her until she was taken in by Claudia, her foster mom, who she said helped her turn her life around.

“She took me from basically being on the streets and ending up probably in jail. I’m now a college graduate and I have a life ahead of me. Basically, that’s how I look at it and it’s all because of her,” she said.

Children enter foster care because their biological parents are unable to care for them. Marin County has a shortage of foster-care families willing to take in teenagers and young adults faced with the insecurities of transitioning into adulthood.

Heather Ravani, assistant director of Marin County’s Health & Human Services Department said these kids need close attention and role modeling.

“For some of our kids who go away to college, some of the things we look for are foster parents who are able to take these kids in over Christmas break. Some are vacations in places where they don’t have a place to come home to,” Ravani said.

Marin has 35 licensed foster-care homes and 25 dedicated family caregivers. More than 90 local children are in need of foster placement.

Bahtia said all it takes is love and commitment.

“She’s not somebody who gave birth to me, but she’s definitely my mother. That’s what a mother should be,” said Bahtia.

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