St. Paul teen helping Oregon foster kids as part of senior proje - KPTV - FOX 12

St. Paul teen helping Oregon foster kids as part of senior project

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St. Paul High School Senior Tamra Weaver (KPTV) St. Paul High School Senior Tamra Weaver (KPTV)

A local high school student is making it her mission to help Oregon's foster kids. She's raising money to buy toys for as many kids as she can and it's all part of her senior project.

St. Paul High School Senior Tamra Weaver has a vision.

"We're going for a jungle theme, I just kind of revamped the room in a way," said Weaver.

A vision to make the waiting room at the northeast Salem DHS office a bit warmer and more fun.

"It was kind of bland before," said Weaver. "I mean there was some stuff in here, but a majority of the stuff was toys that kids can get sick from, a lot of stuff that can go in their mouth."

She painted the walls in bright colors and is now filling the room up with toys and kid sized tables and chairs. An idea that came to her earlier this year after her teacher brought up the subject of senior projects.

"I originally was going the way of thinking about doing something with horses, or something like that, but then I thought why not do something with foster care."

The thought of helping kids entering the foster care system is something that's important to the teen. Her family is currently fostering two children right now.

"I've seen and heard what a lot of other kids are going through and from having other fosters in our home and knowing their stuff, I just don't want them going through that, I want to make a difference and make their lives happier," said Weaver.

But, beyond just seeing and hearing what's happening in the state system, Weaver knows something about it firsthand.

"When I was born, my mom, she ended up testing positive for drugs in her system and so I tested positive with it as well. I went home with one of the nurses in the hospital," said Weaver. "She took care of me for a while, not sure how long, but I went through seven, or eight foster placements within the two-year span."

Weaver was formally adopted by the family she's living with now and together she says they all make it a point to help foster kids any way they can.  Her senior project is just the latest example.

"I figured why not get tables and chairs and I'll go around to different businesses to ask for money and donations, you know anything they can do to help," Weaver said.

In a few month's time, the teen says she's raised some $900 dollars and counting, but she's not done yet. After seeing the difference she's made so far, she's not ready to stop. She has big plans of remodeling more rooms in other state offices.

"It makes me feel like I'm actually doing something, I'm making a difference, I'm bringing happiness to little kids. I never thought I could do this, but I guess if you put your mind to it you can do anything."

If you're interested in helping Weaver out with her mission to donate toys for foster kid waiting rooms, email DHS caseworker Erma Brundidge at

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