It’s no secret around here that summer is one of the most exciting and favorite times for CCAI. With our programs in full swing, and almost as many interns as staff members, there’s a certain energy in the office that cannot be matched.
Now, those of us in DC are finally putting away our winter coats, driving around with our windows rolled down, and anxiously awaiting the cherry blossoms‘ peak bloom. But we think what’s even more exciting is that in just 2 months the 2010 FYI Class will be ascending on DC to start this year’s FYI program.
Picture of the 2009 FYI Class taken during the retreat to Danville, PA
Just earlier this week one of our FYIs from last summer called the office. We’re privileged to not only share a life-changing summer with these interns, but to also be included in their lives months and years after they return to their homes. John Paul said something to us so touching that I asked him if I could share his thoughts. I believe his words are powerful and speak to the influence of the FYI program much better than any CCAI staff member ever could. John Paul said,
John Paul, left
‘When I came to the FYI program, it was different. I had never experienced a program for former foster youth that treated us like capable adults or expected us to be able to surpass our peers. Chelsea, Emily, Mark, Rebecca, and Kathleen pushed us and encouraged us when times got hard. My supervisor from last summer and I still talk to each other and have lunch together when I visit DC. During the FYI program, I learned so much about myself and my abilities that I have been able to push pass the fear that I might not be good enough for the real world. Every time things start to get hard or I start doubting that I can do something, I just remember the experiences I had with the FYI program and how I could do things I never thought I’d be able to do. I got the opportunity to do something that so few people my age get to do, let alone former foster youth. Without the FYI program, I know that I would never be aware that I could be as good as anyone else, if not better.’
Please continue to check back as we continue to prepare for the arrival of 12 extraordinary students who will soon be making their way to DC to forever impact the lives of foster children as they too are forever changed.