Perspectives on the legacy of National Foster Care Month

As part of CCAI’s effort to highlight National Foster Care Month, we asked several individuals to share their opinions on NFCM.  All of these people share a common interest in the child welfare system, but each brings a different perspective to the discussion.  Please read below to see how a U.S. Senator, a former foster youth, a social services program director, and a journalist all respond to the question:

5 years from now, what do you want the legacy of National Foster Care Month to be?

“Come 2015, we would have many more persons all over this country willing to help us reunify kids with their own families safely and, if not possible, to simply be the kid’s family forever through adoption or guardianship.”  –Elizabeth Black, Executive Director of Child Permanency for Tennessee’s Department of Children’s Services

“As Co-Chair of the Congressional Coalition on Adoption, I am encouraged by the dedication of the 220 members who continue to advocate and work to provide children in foster care with a loving home and family each and every day. I am hopeful that when National Foster Care Month is celebrated, five years from now, we will see the impact that legislation like the Chaffee Foster Care Independence Act and the Fostering Connections Act has had on improving the outcomes for youth in foster care. I am confident that the awareness raised by the events being held across the country during the month of May, will encourage willing and able adults to take the opportunity to change the life of a youth in foster care, whether it is through adoption, being a foster parent, mentoring or advocating on behalf of orphans.”  –Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA)

“In five years, I would like to see National Foster Care Month be remembered as the catalyst for a nationwide movement which ultimately provided one person committed to unconditional love and compassion for every orphaned child.”  -Mikelle Wortman, foster care alum and 2008 Foster Youth Intern

“In the next five years I hope to see—and be a part of—a complete shift in the way the news media covers foster care.  I hope that National Foster Care Month will result in an overall increase in rigorous and holistic coverage of the system and will be the precursor to a movement in the general public to take up our collective duty for our collective children.  National Foster Care Month gives the news media and the general public this window into the realities of the system which is invaluable.  Knowing that the solutions are out there will empower the people to rise and fight to assure that children are cared for.”  -Daniel Heimpel, Project Director of Fostering Media Connections

What would you like the legacy of National Foster Care Month to be? Comment and share your thoughts with fellow foster care advocates!

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The Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to raising awareness about the millions of children around the world in need of permanent, safe, and loving homes and to eliminating the barriers that hinder these children from realizing their basic right of a family.

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