New free resource for foster and kinship care providers


Foster family advocates and state officials christened a new free resource for foster and kinship care providers this afternoon.

Mina’s Foster Closet, 11836 South Ave., is accepting donations of new or gently used goods to offer free to foster families, kinship caregivers or emancipated teens, such as kids’ clothes and shoes, strollers, formula and home supplies for emancipated teens striking out on their own.

The nonprofit’s president, Nicole Tsarnas, said though foster families receive a stipend for the state-placed children they take into their home, it often doesn’t cover all the children’s needs.

Jennifer Kollar, Mahoning County Children Services spokeswoman, said she sees the new resource as a boon for kinship providers — natural relatives of children in the foster system — or emancipated teens, who don’t receive as much monetary support from the foster system.

State Sen. Michael Rulli, R-33rd, was one of many who toured the closet today, and said the closet’s mission “warms the heart.”

The closet also received certificates of recognition from Congressmen Sherrod Brown and Bill Johnson.

Read more in Saturday’s Vindicator and on

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