Opinion Extra

An ‘All Pro Dad’ fosters love, positive environment for kids

University of South Carolina athletics director Ray Tanner and his wife are parents to three, including two adopted children.
University of South Carolina athletics director Ray Tanner and his wife are parents to three, including two adopted children. The State file photo

Every good athlete must be adaptable. The grind of a full season requires adaptation to injuries, weather and environments. It takes a stable group of leaders to successfully guide a team through those transitions.

In 2010, when our Gamecock baseball team made it to the College World Series, the opening game lasted more than nine hours because of bad weather. We lost the game, removing any margin for error in the tournament. Our team had to adjust to a difficult situation and rally together. We did. It was pivotal growth for us as we went on to win back-to-back national championships.

Children across South Carolina need families to provide similar stability for them during difficult life hardships. Thousands of children and young adults need loving families to help keep them on a successful path.

South Carolinians are some of the most loving and generous people in the world. It is why my wife and I put down roots here. It is also why I am partnering with All Pro Dad and the S.C. Department of Social Services to raise awareness of the tremendous need for more quality foster homes to care for the state’s most vulnerable children.

Fostering and adoption is a mutually beneficial relationship, very similar to the coach and player connection. My coaches in my playing days were some of the greatest influences for seasons of life. Their love and guidance helped me mature as a man and prepared me for parenthood.

As parents to three, including two adopted children, my wife and I experience immense joy seeing our children develop and grow. Every child deserves that opportunity. Some South Carolina families are dealing with difficult circumstances that require our time and help. Many of life’s most beautiful moments emerge from the toughest challenges.

I encourage you and your family to consider how you can help fostering efforts in South Carolina. Whether welcoming a child into your home or volunteering your time, we all can play a part in ensuring every child grows up in a positive environment in every season of life.

Join us in helping provide stable and safe homes for South Carolina’s children. Discover how with helpful resources at www.allprodad.com/foster/south-carolina.

Ray Tanner is the athletics director for the University of South Carolina. He was a two-time national championship winning baseball coach for the Gamecocks. He also serves as a spokesman for All Pro Dad.