AUSTINTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – A local organization is asking for more bilingual families to volunteer as foster parents.

“The need is so great. In Ohio alone, there are 25,000 youth in foster care,” said Courtney Townsend, program director for foster parent growth and retention. 

The National Youth Advocate Program is an organization that helps match foster families with waiting children.

“We actually just started our last virtual training of the year, and there is still time to join that class,” she said. 

Townsend says the need for foster parents willing to take in teenagers, sibling groups and bilingual children is high. 

The organization will walk the families through the training and certification process at no cost and will help with expenses for the children being fostered. 

Anyone interested in finding out more information about becoming a foster parent or signing up for the virtual class can text “Foster” to 330-307-1715 or call the office at 330-633-4187.

The organization is also holding a virtual event Thursday evening that can be viewed on this website.