About “I am a Foster Leader”

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At the time when the concept of Foster Leaders was first being envisioned, the foster care story had traditionally centered around the negative outcomes of foster youth. Even though these outcomes shed light on the inability of a systemized environment to raise our nation’s children and place a reasonable amount of urgency behind becoming a positive influence in the lives of foster youth, they do not come close to telling the entire foster care story. Communicating these outcomes without showcasing the resilience and potential of the foster youth often leaves those from foster care stigmatized. Consequently, foster youth have a less than hopeful perspective about their future and the public has reservations about becoming foster parents, becoming advocates, or adopting out of foster care.

We utilize “I’m a Foster Leader” slides to promote the creativity, resilience, and overall leadership potential of the foster youth community. Each slide showcases a former foster youth and a hobby, talent, or skill they are most proud of, outside of being a foster youth advocate. We have chosen not to feature foster youth advocacy on these slides because we want to feature the variety of talents and skills that exist in the foster youth community, and the variety of communities in which former foster youth are involved outside of foster care.

We envision the following outcomes as the public is made more aware of the variety of skills, talents, and leadership interests that exist in the foster youth community:

– Stigmas attached to foster youth are eliminated, leading to a dramatic increase in qualified foster parents, equipped child welfare professionals, and dedicated advocates.

– Foster youth have a voice to inspire.

– Youth currently in care are assured their interests are worthy and that those interests can be nurtured to give them hope for the future.

– Foster parents, child welfare professionals, and foster youth advocates are encouraged by an understanding that their efforts are often the key to foster youth overcoming the obstacles that are associated with being in foster care.

If you are a Former Foster Youth and Want to Participate in the
“I’m a Foster Leader” Campaign, please submit the following to

– Photo of you by Yourself

– Your First Name

– How Many Years you were in Foster Care

– Your Hobbies, Interests, and Talents

– Encouragement and Advice for Younger Generations of Foster Youth (Unlimited Length)

Please browse advice, inspirational quotes, and other encouraging words from our “I am a Foster Leader” participants below:

Elena Taylor – Marathon Runner
Kathy Jones – Advocate for Abuse Survivors
Venasta Thomas – Accounting Graduate