Meet Edgar Carranza: Foster Youth Advocate

By CR Staff

23-year-old Edgar Carranza is a former foster kid and a foster youth advocate working with Georgia EmpowerMEnt. This week, Edgar addressed CR supporters in Atlanta, describing the realities and impact of living in state care. Q: How did you come to find yourself in state care? I was thrown into foster care at age 13 […]

CONGRESS MUST ‘SHOW STRONG MORAL LEADERSHIP’ ON DACA

By CR Staff

In response to the Trump administration’s announcement regarding the formal end to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) program, Sandy Santana, executive director of Children’s Rights, released the following statement: “Children’s Rights condemns the rescission of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The repeal will upend the lives of hundreds of thousands […]

Meet Shay House: Foster Youth Advocate and LGBTQ Activist

By CR Staff

21-year-old Shay House is a foster youth advocate and LGBTQ activist from Oakland, California.  During her time in foster care, she lived in more than 40 placements and attended 23+ schools.  But against all odds, Shay persisted in her academic goals. This fall, she will be starting her junior year at Mills College where she […]

Ninth Circuit Rules That Unaccompanied Minors are Entitled to Bond Hearings

By CR Staff

Hector was detained as an unaccompanied minor in California at the age of fifteen by the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR). Even though he had a parent living in the state, the ORR held him in a detention facility for almost a year and a half, without an immigration hearing or an explanation for why […]

Beating The Odds

By Samantha Smith

As Fostering the Future 2017 winds down we are taking a moment to reflect on lessons learned. Read Samantha’s account on what she struggled through within the foster care system while she was on her way towards attaining a college degree and becoming a social worker. “My message to my brothers and sisters in care? DO IT. Go to college. It’s scary. Everything that you’re unfamiliar with is scary. But you’re going to find so many new things about yourself and learn to advocate for yourself. And once you obtain your degree it’s the best feeling in the world. It’s something that foster care can’t take from you. It can rob you of your sense of stability and self-worth, but it cannot rob you of your education once you’ve earned it. And that’s more powerful than anything.” Click “Daily Spotlight” to read her whole story.

My Only Way Out

By Nyeelah Inniss

There are many reasons why youth in foster care–and those who aged out–miss school. Nyeelah, who had to commute almost 2 ½ hours during her senior year of high school, explains one of them in today’s post: “I was … yearning for the love and support of a parent, and I just wasn’t getting it. I stopped going to school some days, or would forget to turn in my homework, and just gave up.” Click “Daily Spotlight” to read all of Nyeelah’s story!

Bridging the Gap Between Foster Youth and Higher Education

By Bridging the Gap

Over the past month we have given you many first-person accounts from foster youth discussing the obstacles they faced on the path to higher education as part of #FosterMyEducation. Now, as Fostering the Future 2017 wraps up, we’ve collected accounts and perspectives of academics from across the country who are working towards bridging the gap between foster youth and higher education. Read now and discover why #FosterMyEducation was only the first step towards building a brighter future for America’s foster youth. Click “Daily Spotlilght” for the whole story.

Even the Success Stories Need Help

By Barbara Huggins

Meet Barbara and read her story about lessons learned as Fostering the Future 2017 wraps up today! “I was okay with my status for the most part. “I’m a foster kid,” I would tell my friends and my teacher. “I’m in foster care,” was comfortable for me to say. I gave a few presentations on my personal experiences to my classmates, which precipitated my advocacy work.

But after a while, my personal safety and well-being would impact my academics. I honestly don’t know how I managed school work and keeping up with my peers during my first eight years in foster care. I was in homes that were emotionally and physically abusive, which left me with an undercurrent of low self-worth and perfectionism born out of a fear of messing up and a desire to be loved unconditionally. I wish the schools I attended realized that when I forgot my homework, it was because I was thinking of my home life, and my life was full of anxiety.

Those times I forgot my homework cost me dearly because I would be inappropriately punished in my foster homes. The cycle of forgetting my homework would bring on abuse at home. Learning was impossible because mistakes became dangerous. The anxiety would cause me to zone out at school entirely, which meant that I would fall behind. I had a lot of potential, but the emotional toll of balancing my academics and personal safety was a big burden to carry.” Click “Daily Spotlight” to read her whole story.

Learning to Build a House with No Tools

By Raven Profit

Survial Skills 101 wraps up with Raven’s story today: “In my opinion, everyone has the right to be successful. In order for youth in foster care to be successful we must remove the stigma of being labeled incapable of performing academically, socially and economically because we are in the child welfare system. If anything, young people who survive the foster care system have demonstrated that they have the ability to overcome extraordinary circumstances. If provided the resources and support to attend the colleges they dream of attending — even a top college if accepted — they will succeed.

I am now working towards a bachelor’s degree with a double major and minor, am a member of one of the largest historically black Greek sororities in the nation- Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Incorporated, am the Vice President of all the historically black Greek organizations at my university, am on the Executive Committee for the SUNY Albany chapter of the NAACP, am an ambassador to promote higher education for youth, and also work for the Office of Children and Family Services.” Click “Daily Spotlight” to read all of Raven’s story.