Leadership Profile: Dameon from Lucas County, Ohio

dameon caldwell

Location: Lucas County, OH
Number of Years in Foster Care: 12 years
Interests: Involved in improving other systems in which the foster youth community may come into contact (homeless, juvenile justice, sex trafficking, special needs, etc.).

Definition of Leadership: Making a change from mistakes you witnessed when you were a part of it.

Goals: My goals are always to be involved as much as possible without overshadowing people.



Leadership Profile: Anne from Highland County, Ohio

Anne Phillips

Location: Highland County, OH
Number of Years in Foster Care: 6 Years
Interests:  Giving advice to others when they ask, arts and crafts, taking care of animals. I volunteer at the church I attend. I’m involved in the activities that occur at the state lake I live near.

Definition of Leadership: Role models that have the experience and skills to guide and lead those that are unsure what to do or where to take the next step.


Leadership Profile: Vincent from Greene County, Ohio

Vincent Male

Location: Greene County, OH
Number of Years in Foster Care: 11 Months
Interests: I love playing video games, going bike riding, hiking, watching anime and movies, and a lot of other things indoors and out. Around my community I don’t do as much as I would like to, though i do support the local Girl Scouts of America and Boy Scouts of America. 

Definition of Leadership: My definition of leadership is helping others overcome their struggles, leading them down a path that they have laid out, and have chosen, and not telling them that a certain way is right. Allowing followers and peers the opportunity for growth at all times, teaching everyone what it is to help and support those around you without just giving them the answer.

Goals: I am planning on going back to school soon and figuring out what I would like to do as a career.


Foster Leaders Weekly Update – 2/11/2018

**If you would like to share any event(s), resource(s), or any other update(s) that are beneficial to those transitioning out of foster care or those who are dedicated to guiding them through this transition, please comment on this post with a brief summary, in which states this information is relevant, and link(s) where we can find more information. **


Jade Scar
Location:  Alabama
Number of Years in Foster Care: 6 Years
Interests: Drawing and Poetry

Definition of Leadership: The ability to find self – confidence in yourself, not in trying to please everyone else. Learning to love yourself, as well as to know you deserve to be loved. Also being bold in making your own choices in life.

Goals: To start taking Bible Classes and Christian Counseling Classes




The 2018 Congressional Foster Youth Shadow Program application is now open! The National Foster Youth Institute is accepting submissions from former foster youth (ages 18-30) across the United States with leadership potential and a drive for change! Individuals who are interested in using their voices to improve the foster care system for all youth and families are encouraged.  If this sounds like you or someone you know, please complete and/or share the application. ***The deadline to apply is Wednesday, February 28th!*** You can find out more about the Shadow Day experience on our website or contact our team at shadowday@nfyi.org CLICK THE LINK below to complete the 2018 Congressional Foster Youth Shadow Day Program Application:
Link: Tinyurl.com/NFYIShadowDay2018

Former foster youth, with a thought out discussion of foster care being utilized as an intervention for struggling families.
Link: http://www.myajc.com/news/opinion/opinion-former-foster-child-says-dfcs-should-last-resort/zcKh3ivT0WG2IupwXJb2YI/


Robert Moses’ Kin Dance Company’s Bootstrap Program brings foster youth into the company’s studio. Workshops in dance, music, video, visual art, web design, business, and marketing aim to expose Bay Area youth to possibilities and resources for careers in the arts
Link:  https://www.sfcv.org/preview/robert-moses-kin/robert-moses-kin-fosters-a-new-generation-of-artists-with-bootstrap-tales



Grand Junction:  This event is for former foster youth, aka, Foster Alumni. If you experienced foster care for a short time, aged out, reunified with your parents, were adopted, or were raised by someone other than your biological parents, we would love for you to join us! Foster Alumni Mentors is a local program working toward ending the stigma of who foster youth become in life and inspiring hope in those who are currently in the foster care system.  Please click here to RSVP.

Christian rapper, Tedashii, will be putting on a concert at Crosspointe Church (Valdosta) on Friday, February 16 at 7PM (EST).  Proceeds from this event will support Called to Care.  Called to Care works with foster youth, ages 14 to 21.
Link: http://www.valdostadailytimes.com/news/local_news/rapper-to-perform-at-crosspointe/article_5ac780cf-8792-5579-9cf1-15ca28b7d903.html


Click Here for Tickets


Former foster youth, Kevinee Gilmore, purchased a home and is working with local professionals to prepare it for 3 aged-out foster youth to be able to live in.
Link: http://www.wkyc.com/article/news/local/aged-out-foster-youth-can-soon-call-this-house-a-home/95-516911158

Foster Leaders Weekly Update – 1/29/2018




This article illustrated quite well why we see some of the negative adult outcomes we see from foster youth.  These outcomes are often presented in a way that dismisses the root of the outcomes and places most, if not all, the blame on foster youth for their outcomes.  Some of the key points from this article is that young adults leave foster care without adequate awareness of the resources that are available for them, and there are wait lists that are up to months and even years for the resources of which they are aware.  Understanding this, we must do a better job of nurturing the inherent ability of many foster youth of finding ways to make things work when there are few available resources (industriousness), instead of focusing so much on rigid curriculums that direct foster youth to overburdened, often state-sponsored resources as they are navigating life after foster care.
Link: http://wwmt.com/news/local/foster-care-youth-struggle-to-find-housing-after-aging-out-of-system

There is a new film, called “Night Comes On,” that showcases the transition for those leaving the juvenile justice system around the age of 18 and the contrast that could potentially exist between the lives of biological children and foster children who live in the same home. Please click the link for a review of the film.
Link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt7184124/

Katie’s experience in the foster care system along with Mia and Robert’s passion for children and education led them to collaborate with Together We Rise to help make a difference in the lives of foster youth. Their goal is to help send foster youth to college and we need your help to raise $5,000 in 90 days!  There is under 25 days left to help with this challenge

Link: https://www.togetherwerise.org/fundraise/m_r_k


Ozark CollegeShared by Melani


ifosterjobsifosterjobs2Shared by Andre

Story of former foster youth and University of Colorado Women’s Basketball Player, Janea Bunn
Link: https://www.thedenverchannel.com/sports/from-foster-care-to-division-i-athlete-cus-forward-janea-bunn-hopes-to-inspire-others

At the Meriden Provider Network, Stacey from MW Chrysalis announced that they have funding for security deposits and first month’s rent for DV clients. The client must be employed. The funding is time limited, so they want to use it quickly. If you have any questions, call Stacey or Linsey at (860) 630-1638.
Link: https://mwchrysalis.org/

The Pratt Center – Fostering Success and Leadership is designed to provide academic support services, personal and professional development activities for CSU students who have exited foster care and are pursuing a Bachelor’s degree.  Special attention through customized services will be given to the unique needs of foster care alumni enrolled at CSU as freshmen, transfer students from an accredited institution or returning students who previously stopped – out or dropped – out of college before earning a Bachelor’s degree.
Link: http://www.csuohio.edu/engagement/fostering-success-and-leadership-programs

Foster Leaders Weekly Update – 1/7/2018

Our Foster Leaders Weekly Update platform is designed to share notable information that we come across in our networking efforts. The information we share is meant to benefit those transitioning from foster care to a sustainable adulthood and those who are in the position to guide them. We purposely focus our information sharing on the 3 core concepts that guide Foster Leaders:

WE FOSTER CONNECTION through information that promotes the growth of a local and a national support network for those transitioning out of foster care.

WE FOSTER LEARNING through sharing opportunities to practice skills that are important in foster youth achieving the personal leadership goals.

WE FOSTER LEADERS by promoting former foster youth who are serving their communities, pursuing their career goals, and participating in other leadership roles in their respective communities.

In an effort to alleviate some of the information overload that is encountered by many of those who are involved with foster care at some level, we sort our updates by geographic location. Moreover, all information that benefits those in only one state is sorted by that particular state and all information that benefits those in more than one state is sorted under “NATIONWIDE.”

Please comment on this post if you would like to share a resource, event, news article, or other piece of information that is beneficial to those transitioning out of foster care or those who are guiding them through their transition.




Guide to Tuition Assistance Programs for foster youth in all 50 states
Link: https://www.ecs.org/state-level-tuition-assistance-programs-for-foster-youth-in-postsecondary-education/


This is a neat resource I came across this past week.  The Academy of Craft Training is a public/private partnership between the construction industry and the State of Alabama’s K-12 education system. Our mission is to recruit, educate and guide high school students for educational and employment opportunities in the construction industry. Approximately 30 percent of students graduate from high school don’t attend college and have neither academic nor job skills. Our goal is to help these students get the education and skills they need to be entry-level, skilled workers in the construction industry.
Link: http://academyofcrafttraining.org/


Have come across many articles saying that the Missouri Governor’s wife, Sheena Greitens, is heavily focused on foster care.  Is there a way we can connect with her and be a resource for her?


For high school students involved in the child welfare system, The Foundling’s Road to Success Program matches teens with a private tutor, who helps them in all areas of school and classwork at the locations and times that work best for the student. Tutors then guide their students through the college application process.
Link: https://www.nyfoundling.org/blog/changing-education-outcomes-foster-youth-look-2017/


Fostering Further has created a store where young adults who have aged out of the foster care system around Licking County can get free supplies for their new home, whether it be a college dorm room or an apartment. The store has kitchen supplies, lamps, small furniture, personal care items and nonperishable food.
Link: http://www.newarkadvocate.com/story/news/local/2018/01/05/group-helps-foster-care-youth-they-start-their-own/931975001/


TruLight 127 was started by a former foster youth, named Sondra Ajasin and is dedicated to making sure youth do not have to age out of foster care.
Link: http://www.trulight127.org/


Former foster youth who is a Washington State Representative.  Her name is Rep. Michelle Caldier and she sponsored House Bill 1444 that requires  school districts to facilitate on-time grade-level progression and graduation for homeless, foster and other at-risk youth. Local graduation requirements will now be waived for students who enroll in three or more districts throughout the year and still meet state graduation requirements. Instead of being shown the door, thousands of students will instead be handed a diploma.
Link: http://houserepublicans.wa.gov/2018/01/01/helping-homeless-foster-youth-graduate/


– Former Foster Youth Can Get Involved by Defining Leadership.  Click Here to Participate.