In Their Shoes: Kyrstal and Jack’s Journey

A woman kissing a little boys cheek.

Kyrstal and her son, Jack, 1, recently moved from Pennsylvania to Fort Myers, Florida, in search of a better life. But, despite her best efforts, Kyrstal is struggling to find a safe place to live with Jack.

Aware of Kyrstal’s crisis, the Department of Children and Families (DCF) recommended she reach out to Better Together for help.

“I know he is going to be safe,” Kyrstal said of her decision to allow a Better Together host family to care temporarily for Jack.

With support from Better Together, Kyrstal has begun her journey toward creating a better life and bringing her baby boy home. Baby Jack is currently being hosted with a family through our Better Families program. His brave mommy, Kyrstal, is working hard to create a better life for them on the other side.

Follow their journey through weekly online updates, and learn how you can help cheer them on toward their new, Better Family.

Southwest Florida Virtual Job Fair

Keeping Families Together and Children Out of Foster Care

60% of children in foster care are there because of issues related to neglect. They are there because they have good parents who cannot navigate their current crisis and take care of their children at the same time. Foster care separates at-risk families without a clear path or track record of restoration or healing of the family.

We believe there is a way to fix this.

Better Together is an organization that helps parents going through a hard time keep their kids out of foster care, find work, and address the root causes of their struggle so that they can reunite as a family with the tools and support system to thrive. We are a privately funded and professionally supported organization, made up of volunteers who believe helping people help themselves is the best way to restore dignity and bring families together.

Learn More About Program Impact
Foster Care is Broken — And At-Risk Families Are Paying the Price
Foster Care Better Together
Child Separation Mandatory Voluntary
Average Length of Separation 569 Days 41 Days
Children Re-entering Foster Care After Initial Separation 56% Less than 2%
Cost $30,000 per Year
per Child Paid by
Tax Payers
$1,200 per Year per Child
Paid by Private Donors
Source of Income Gov. Funding and Tax Dollars Private Donors – $0 in Gov. Funding

Two Programs, One Mission

Better Families

Our Better Families program was founded first, as a way to offer families an alternative to foster care, as a preventative step, before things escalate. To date, we have served 1,600+ children through Better Families and have been able to keep 96% of the children we serve out of foster care. We have been able to do this through 100% private funding.

Better Jobs

Better Jobs was created when we realized 76% of our families came to us because of an economic hardship tied to unemployment. We wanted to offer a program which was even more preventative and would help us reach more families earlier.  Since that time, we have served 18,000 nationwide through community job fairs hosted at and by local churches.

What People Are Saying About Better Together

Host Family Highlight: The Bechtle Family

“We want to teach our kids a lot of things, gratefulness for what they have, we want to teach them what the world is really like, teach them what love looks like and it’s often hard to find something that you can do to show them that.” -Jonathan Bechtle, Host Dad

Find Out How You Can Get Involved

We are a privately funded organization that survives by the support of our community supporters, volunteers, and local businesses. You can help be part of the solution to serve at-risk families and help bring restoration to those in need.

Get Help

If You Need Help, We’re Here.

Through our Better Jobs program, you can get connected to job coaches that will help give you guidance, support, and encouragement. Through our job fairs, you can get connected to career opportunities through our employment partners. Sign up below to receive information on upcoming events and coaching opportunities.

Through our Better Families program, we assist families going through a temporary crisis or a struggle that is making it difficult for them to care for their children or get ahead. Through our community volunteers, we offer the ability to get temporary assistance while you get the help you need.