“Why not now?” is the question Oscar and Olivia Motta’s youngest son asked his parents about wanting to help foster youth. When their oldest child moved across the country to attend college, the Motta family knew it was the perfect time in their lives to fulfill their dreams to explore foster care.
The couple from Whittier, California have deep ties to foster care as their family has a history of fostering and adopting children in need. The idea to become foster parents was first sparked by Oscar’s mother and father who used to foster, and again several years later when Olivia’s brother adopted two children through foster care. In 2013, the Mottas continued their family’s legacy of foster parenting when they became certified foster parents with the help of Aspiranet.
Since then, the Mottas have dedicated their lives to caring for sibling sets to preserve the vital familial bond during children’s transition into foster care; the couple currently fosters two sets of siblings.
The Mottas take the approach of caring for foster youth the same as they would their own children by keeping them involved in school and extracurricular activities, and including them in family vacations.
“We believe it’s so important for children to stay active and be involved in different activities they can learn to love and focus on as a creative outlet,” explains Olivia.
Oscar and Olivia spend several hours a week supporting the foster children’s passions, whether it’s shuttling a child to an acting class, or traveling out of state for a club basketball game. The Motta’s biological daughter, who recently moved back to California after graduating college in Vermont, currently coaches their foster daughter in gymnastics.
The couple also maintains relationships with former foster youth who have been reunified with their birth parents and adopted into other families, even commuting across the county to attend a former foster youth’s football games.
“Until becoming certified foster parents, we were unaware of how dire the need was to provide homes for foster youth, as well as the severity of some of the situations these children may experience at a young age,” explained Olivia. “As foster parents, we integrate our foster children into our everyday lives as if they were our own, exposing them to new experiences, and a structured scheduled so they have the opportunity to be raised in a stable, loving environment that all children deserve.”