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Tipton Children's Home works to not be forgotten

TIPTON, Okla._A residential children's home is something you may not even know exists in southwest Oklahoma and the officials running it say that's the problem.

Tipton Children's Home is a place for children to come live whose parents can no longer care for them and serves as an alternative to the state's foster system. But they say they are often overlooked since many people aren't aware of the services they provide.

Tipton Children's Home was built 90 years ago and today, it houses less than 25 children. The director says sometimes it feels like they've almost been forgotten.

"I think it's just because of our association and the way we've run things in the past but we are trying to change that and get our name out that we do exist and we are helping children," said Director Joe Waugh.

Waugh says they always have room for more children. In Oklahoma there are always thousands of kids in foster homes and shelters, but their goal is to get the children before they go into DHS custody. He says at their home, children get the attention that many of them are longing for.

"Every one of our children have been abused in some shape, way or form more than likely because of the situation they came from," said Waugh.

Though they are licensed by DHS, they are not ran by them. Waugh says the non-profit places children with house parents who live with several children in cottages around the campus. He says the house parents are the ones that deserve all the credit because they make the biggest impacts in the kids lives.

"Raising children that come into your lives from the situations they do, it's very tough," he said.

Waugh says these are just normal children that need a good home.

"This is kind of my life mission, what I've always dreamed of doing and seeing. If we can make a difference in these children's lives, seeing if we can take someone that's maybe from a broken home and seeing them ten or twenty years later being successful in life," said Waugh.

Waugh says this is the home he grew up in while his parents served as house parents for many other children. He says it's always great to see what the children go on to do with their lives.

"The ones you might think ‘well I don't know if they're going to make it or not,’ they'll surprise you and really shine and really grow and mature. That's the most satisfying part of our job," said Waugh.

The home accepts children from all over Oklahoma, from ages five to seventeen and they can hold up to thirty-two children.

Since Tipton Children's Home is a non-profit they are always in need of donations. To find out how you can help call 580-667-5221.


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