Meet the Knopf Family
A quiet home is something that the Knopf family hasn’t experienced for quite some time. With four adopted children, three foster children and three children of their own (ages ranging from 18-32), the Knopf family is definitely used to laughter and loud noise.
In 1988, Jim and Cindy Knopf were flipping through their church bulletin, when they stumbled across a flyer from Lutheran Child & Family Service of Michigan. The flyer, designed as an appeal to the congregation, was used to draw potential Foster Care parents to an orientation at the Grand Rapids office. Jim and Cindy had just moved into a larger home in West Michigan, and they both had a passion for helping children, so it was a natural fit. They attended the orientation, and agreed that being Foster Parents was what they felt called to do. Within five months, they were licensed and ready to welcome their first child.
Twenty years later, and with more than 70 children having been a part of the Knopf family, they are still welcoming children into their home with open arms. Jim and Cindy primarily focus their efforts on helping teenagers, however, their true passion lies in the satisfaction of knowing that they are helping to break the cycle of abuse.
“I am a professional mom,” explains Cindy, “Our whole purpose of being foster parents is to meet the needs of children who might otherwise be lost without us.”
One of the most rewarding memories for Cindy was when they adopted their son Charlie. Charlie was brought to them at age three, and they adopted him at age 5. Charlie is now 20 years old, and doing very well. “I remember the first three or four years were such a struggle for us. Charlie is a special needs child, and it was difficult to learn how to meet his every need. I look at Charlie now, and I realize that Charlie wouldn’t have had a chance at life if it weren’t for us. He is my inspiration for doing this, and I am so thankful for him.”
Becoming a foster parent can be a grueling process, but as Cindy describes, “Anything that is worthwhile and life changing, takes work. Believe me; the end result is worth the initial sacrifice.”
If you are interested in becoming a foster parent or learning more about our foster care program, you can log on to our website at www.lcfsmi.org or you can call our foster care hotline at:
North Region, Bay City: 800-625-7650
West Region, Grand Rapids: 800-968-4696
Metro Region, Detroit: 800-365-5237
A special thank you to the Knopf family for each of the lives you have touched in the past 20 years. You are a special part of the LCFS family, and we are incredibly thankful for you.