Chrisann Kohlhepp, Why I Care Employee Recipient


About 10 years ago after losing her mother, Chrisann Kohlhepp began searching for something “more” in her life. She knew there had to be a way she could make a difference and give back. After finding herself surrounded by youngsters at church for several Sundays in a row, there was no doubt that working with children was what she was meant to do. Fast forward 10 years and Chrisann is a foster parent who has provided a stable, loving home to seven children and teenagers, most of whom have been with her long term.

The impact Chrisann is having on these young lives is evident. She remembers a teenage boy in foster care who was staying with her and how surprised and excited he was when she gave him not only his own room, but a set of keys to her house – a place he could truly call home. And speaking of home, there is no doubt about how committed Chrisann is to these teens, deciding to adopt one of the foster children as her own.

Chrisann is primarily a foster parent for teenagers because they are typically the hardest to place, but for her she is building lifelong relationships, saying “once a young person comes into my home he or she is in my heart forever.” She remains in touch with many of the foster children who she has shared a home with and is even called “Nana” by a former foster child’s little boys.