A Very Full House

“It’s our passion, it’s our heart.”

Lisa and Steve Buck were YFS’ very first foster family, but becoming a foster family wasn’t always part of their plan.

The Bucks already had a full house — four biological children (Savannah, Avery and twins Kinzey and Kirbey) all still living at home — when some good friends decided to become foster parents. At first, the Bucks were just looking for a good way to help support their friends.

“Some friends got involved and we started supporting them by being their respite providers, and in doing so really had our eyes and hearts opened to the plight of these kids,” Lisa explains. “We went on to become foster parents after that.”

The Bucks have fostered eight children and adopted two. Isiaiah and Jeremiah, who are now 7 and 5 years old, were only 3 and 1 when Lisa first met them in the YFS Emergency Shelter.

“Being a foster parent has changed everything that we’ve known about life,” Steve says. “We did this as an answer to a call of our faith, and believe that this is the path that God has put us on. We feel very strongly that we are charged with taking care of these children. It’s our passion, it’s our heart.”

Not only are the Bucks dedicated to helping their own children, Lisa is dedicated to helping all foster children in Oklahoma, which has one of the highest per capita rates of children in DHS custody. Lisa just began her new job as a Foster Parent Ombudsman for DHS. Steve is the new director of the Oklahoma Office of Juvenile Affairs (OJA).

With six kids and a new job, Lisa says they are not open to fostering additional children any time soon.

“We’re kind of busting at the seams. We’re at capacity,” she said. However, the Bucks are maintaining their foster care certification so that they can support other foster parents through respite care.

“Even if you can’t take on others, there is something that everyone can do,” she said. “Even though our house is full right now, we’re continuing on with respite care to help and support others in their foster care journey.”

One of Lisa’s favorite things about being a foster parent through YFS is the opportunity to watch some of her former foster kids grow up in other wonderful families.

“It’s been a wonderful blessing for us to still be able to maintain our relationship with those that we’ve moved on to other places. And we’ve been able to just kind of transition from the role of ‘Foster Mama and Daddy’ to ‘Foster Aunt and Uncle,'” she said.

“To still be a part of those children’s lives and watch them grow up and know that they’re going to be okay is truly one of the greatest joys.”

Steve and Lisa look for opportunities for all of her children to reconnect and have found the perfect holiday: Halloween.

“We all have dinner together and we all go out trick or treating together so we have like 13 kids that we take out to go trick or treating,” Lisa said. “Everybody gets a chance to catch up with everybody and love on everybody. It’s just a very sweet, wonderful thing.”