How I Became a Father :: Fostering and Adopting Children in Need


{In honor of Father’s Day, we are handed over our computer to a local dad for his unique perspective on parenthood. Read along to find out why we are so very thankful for this awesome Dad!}

dads blog

With three boys in the house, my wife and I (especially my wife) have to deal with a lot of testosterone. Two of the boys were adopted into our home in 2012, while our third little man will soon join his brothers. The three boys range in age from 8 months to 4 years. All three of the boys came to us through the foster care system and have known my wife and I as mom and dad since they were days old. Ameri, Zachary, and Logan are our sons and now, brothers for life.

Our Family Life

My wife, Leslie, and I, met in March of 2005, and our relationship blossomed from that point. Today, Leslie and I find ourselves as parents to our three adopted boys, each with a rough beginning to his life. From foster care to a permanent and forever home, our boys are here to stay.

My son Ameri, who we adopted through the foster system, and my granddaughter Jada. So happy to be part of a forever home.
My son Ameri, who we adopted through the foster system, and my granddaughter Jada. So happy to be part of a forever home.

Just like any other family, Leslie and I find ourselves in a home filled with toys, diapers, pull ups, and gallons upon gallons of milk. Thank God our boys love milk, just like Dad. We go through at least seven gallons of milk a week and, often times, more than that.

Our two oldest boys, Ameri and Zachary, have very different tastes when it comes to food selection, although their favorite remains eating on the road. Sonic has been the mainstay of the family outing, at least until recently. The boys have finally warmed up to the idea of trying different restaurants, much to our delight.

Each child has his own personality, which helps make our family very unique … and a lot of fun. We couldn’t imagine life any other way. There is rarely down time in our home, but we love what our family has become; a family full of diversity, warmth, love and acceptance.

What It’s Like to Foster

Leslie and I became foster parents in November of 2006, and since then have had 22 children come into our home. Many of these children were less than one-year-old when they came into our home, and many of those were less than one-week-old.Of those 22 children, three became available for adoption after the rights of the parent(s) were terminated, and we gladly accepted the role.

My wife, Leslie, and I have a special place in our hearts for children. Fostering allows us to help little ones who need a caring and stable adult in their lives.
My wife, Leslie, and I have a special place in our hearts for children. Fostering allows us to help those who need caring and stable adults in life.

As one may be able to tell, my wife and I love the little folk. We have a place in our hearts for helping these young boys and girls.

Ultimately, our aim is to provide the love, guidance, safety, and direction that each of these children need. Many of these very young children come into the foster care system through little, if any, fault of their own.

We do not always agree with the timing or the reunification that often occurs with regard to these children, but we realize that we have filled the void that was present in their lives at a point in time.

Why We Foster … And You Should Too

Fostering, for us, has become a passion. We love what we do, but we aim to help not only those children that come into our home, but also those that find themselves in a system that is oftentimes … unending. Many of these children will spend their entire childhood in the foster care system, not knowing what it is like to be in a stable, permanent home. These children yearn for love, guidance, direction, and warmth.

We are blessed to be able to provide a full-time, stable home to our son Zachary, who we adopted through foster care.
We are blessed to be able to provide a full-time, stable home to our son Zachary, who we adopted through foster care.

With the help of those in the community, these foster children can find a home they can call their own. Adoption is what many of these children yearn for; a chance to have a life filled with stability, love, guidance, and the chance to realize their potential. Adoption is the cure that will help seal the wounds of the heart.

Please, as we celebrate Father’s Day, consider providing a home and helping these at-risk youth. Help give them a chance to celebrate, to live out their dreams and to develop their talents so that they realize their potential. Step up, step out, and help make a permanent difference in the lives of these children. The benefits are absolutely priceless. Make a difference in the lives of others, and become a parent to those who need you.

Want to help, but can’t become a foster or adoptive parent right now? Volunteer to mentor or tutor a child, donate school supplies, or sponsor a child’s care packets, birthday, Christmas or for camp.

For more information, visit the website for South Carolina Department of Social Services or call 1-888-227-3487. The local county DSS or the regional office for Specialized Foster Home Services can help you decide if fostering is right for you, as well a provide you with information on how you can mentor, donate or sponsor a child in foster care.


jesse bioJesse Perkins was raised in South Dakota as the son of service members, living life on the move. After the military, he settled in Florida, North Carolina and finally, South Carolina. His career has been disproportionately involved in the manufacturing arena, albeit mainly in the accounting function. More recently, he began to realize a passion for helping children considered at-risk. With his wonderful wife Leslie by this side, they both thrive on providing a loving, caring, and compassionate home for at-risk youth. Jesse and his family were also featured the Columbia SC Moms Blog post Stories from Multiracial Families in the Midlands – A Celebration of Black History Month.


  1. I loved reading your story. I grew up in a wonderful home and have come to realize that not all children are as lucky. Thank you for your example of giving up many things to give a few children a home. I wanted to share this article with you. I believe that Fathers are God’s gift in this life to give us a glimpse into how he sees us and his love for us. Happy belated Fathers Day. Let me know what you think of the article.

    • Abbey,

      Good evening and thank you for sharing your thoughts as well as for the article, which I loved reading as well. Being a father is the most rewarding job I have ever had, and ever will have. It is odd that so many people have told me how lucky our kids are to have us, but I also realize how lucky and fortunate my wife and I are to have these wonderful children in our lives. I cannot imagine what life would be like without these little ones in our lives. I feel so fortunate to have had the opportunity to share our lives with these children. Abbey, thank you so much, again, for sharing your thoughts and taking the time to share the article. I sincerely appreciate your kindness and warmth. Have a blessed evening, Abbey.

  2. Thanks for sharing such a beautiful moment with us. It is indeed a great happiness when some body becomes father. Congratulation for being a foster father. Children are precious gift of God and they should get love and affection from their parents.


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