Editorials for Tuesday — October 07, 2003

• Foster homes

• Home Depot store

Foster homes

The board of directors of Hale ‘Opio Kaua‘i, Inc. are asking members of the Kaua‘i community to consider taking a foster child into their homes.

Foster parents are special people. They are in between birth parents and adoptive parents in their relationship to a child, and in demand across the state. Being the foster parent of a child can last a short term, or for years. It’s not easy to put your love and life into a child and then have to let the child go once a birth parent comes back into the picture, or if the child’s situation otherwise changes.

The steep rise in the number of foster children is coming in part from the increase in the use of ‘ice’ and other addictive drugs, in addition to problems from alcoholism and other social problems that have been around a long time. Some foster children have psychological and physical problems passed on from their drug-addicted parents. They are the innocent victims of drug addiction and in many cases face a long, hard path in life unless a loving foster parent intervenes with special care.

One should not rush into the role of a foster parent. The right disposition is needed, as well as the correct home setting. One thing a child being placed in a foster home doesn’t need is more problems.

The foster child may in the long run become an important symbol of the toll of ‘ice’ on our society. An addicted mother or father, or both, is robbing their child, or in some cases children, of a happy home, a hope for the future and the love that only a parent can give.

The community is asked to support foster parents when and where they can, if they cannot themselves serve as a foster parent.

Hale ‘Opio’s work with troubled children is related to the foster parent programs, and their directors and staff know well the problems behind the need for more foster parents, and how to deal with troubled youth.

Home Depot store

The Home Depot Store near Kukui Grove Center is just about ready to open. The arrival of a “big box” hardware retailer shows that those doing marketing studies of Kaua‘i are acknowledging that the growth in home construction is growing on the Island, and should continue at the current pace at least into the near future.

Locally-owned hardware stores and other retailers whose products overlap the selection to be found at Home Deport are preparing to rethink, and resharpen, their own marketing plans to better serve their customers. This development is a healthy one.

A good part of Home Depot’s business should cut in to the imports of construction materials and tools that are ordered from suppliers in Honolulu and on the Mainland. Now Kaua‘i workers will be benefiting from jobs selling such items.

It is hoped that our local retailers will survive and flourish in this new business reality, and that Home Depot provides new services and products that will make living on Kaua‘i easier for homeowners who now buy their hardware products locally instead of importing them.


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