As a third generation foster parent, Brianna Kaumans has taken 39 children into her home. Even though she hasn’t had a foster kid for several years, she still does all she can for the children of Saline County. Brianna Kaumans is the BANK VI Hero of the Week.
Brianna is a Salina native. She graduated from Salina Central High School and attended Kansas State University Polytechnic for several years. During her formative years, foster care was a big part of her life. Her mother and grandparents both took in foster children.
“I loved it growing up and I loved that it gave back to the community,” Brianna said. “We are still in contact with some of the kids and it is really nice. Growing up, we found that some of the toughest cases are the ones that come back and stay in contact.”
Brianna became a third generation foster parent after meeting her husband. Although he had some reservations at first, it became a big part of the family’s life. In the ten years that followed, they took in almost 40 foster kids.
During those ten years, Brianna said she only had one child that she felt wasn’t ready to go back home. A family group was also put up for adoption but she said they were all able to stay in the same home.
The Kaumans family grew by two in May of 2011, when they took in two young girls. After learning that the girls might end up back in foster care, they adopted them in 2015. They are now eight and nine-years-old.
Brianna also has five biological children. In Kansas, you can’t have more than six kids under the age of 16 and still be a foster parent. Since their home no longer meets the criteria, they haven’t been able to take in any more foster kids.
“We have actually been working to try to get the rule changed,” Kaumans said. “A lot of big families still have a lot of love and a lot of room. We only take in what we know we can handle.”
Brianna said she still tries to give back in other ways. She has done work with single mothers who are going through college, she is a pack leader for Boy Scouts, is an educational advocate for Families Together and is president of Home and School for St. Mary’s.