That’s how Darrell’s harrowing story begins. It was his 7th birthday and he thought he’d never get out.

“I was terrified. It was pitch black and scary. I remember coming home from school, wishing so hard my parents would surprise me for my birthday. But they didn’t even remember.”

Darrell was beaten often. After awhile, his neighbors began to notice something was wrong. Very wrong. They contacted the authorities and eventually Child Protective Services came to get Darrell.

Darrell was placed in foster care and began to rebuild his life. His foster parents provided a loving home with a warm bed and good food. They read to Darrell and supported him. Being there in the hard times made a world of difference to Darrell.

“Sometimes at night, I have bad nightmares of being trapped somewhere and never getting out. I wake up and scream. Every time, my foster parents come running into my room. They hold me and tell me I don’t have to be scared now.”

We need you to help children like Darrell. Every 18 minutes a child is abused or neglected. The Children’s Center works to find a safe, loving family for children who have been removed from their birth families due to abuse or neglect.

We provide foster parents educational and financial support to help them offer the best possible experience for youth in their care.

If you’re interested in becoming a foster parent and helping kids like Darrell, contact Shereen Allen-Youngblood at 313-262-1119 or

Learn more about becoming a foster parent.

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