About Rise

Every year almost 300,000 children enter foster care nationwide. Media coverage of foster care focuses on tragic child deaths, the need for foster and adoptive parents, and the experiences of young people who “age out” of foster care at 18 or 21. Less understood is that more than half of children in foster care return home to their parents–and that nearly every child who enters foster care wants to go home.

Accessing family support services and navigating the family court system with little support requires extraordinary determination. Rise’s mission is to train parents to write and speak about their experiences in order to support parents and parent advocates and and to guide child welfare professionals in becoming more responsive to the families and communities they serve. Our goal is to reduce unnecessary family separations and increase the likelihood that children who are placed in foster care quickly and safely return home.

Through therapeutic writing workshops for parents, a publication reaching 20,000 readers nationwide, public speaking and staff training reaching thousands of child welfare professionals in New York City, and partnerships with foster care agencies to strengthen their supports for parents, Rise changes the story of who these parents are–and who they can become.

Parent Presentations

Bringing parents’ perspective on racial equity in child welfare

On September 27, 2017, Rise Senior Parent Leader Jeanette Vega spoke on a panel on advocacy at the Center for the Study of Social Policy’s Washington DC convening of the Alliance for Racial Equity.

Drawing on Rise’s issue Facing Race in Child Welfare, Jeanette spoke about the challenges parents must overcome to successfully navigate the child welfare system and discrimination against people of color when poverty is seen as neglect. She drew comparisons between child welfare … Read More

Staff Training

Training CASA Volunteers to Understand Parents’ Experiences

Rise collaborated with CASA-NY to bring parents’ perspective into its training for CASA volunteers. Through observation of their training, Rise recommended adjustments to training content and offered quotes and stories to include in training materials and as handouts. Rise also developed a panel for CASA volunteers, presented in June, and had a parent leader speak at every CASA training.

Parent Support Resources

Rise Know Your Rights Training for Young Parents in Foster Care

In 2017, Rise educated dozens of young mothers who grew up in foster care in order to prevent children from being unnecessarily removed from home. 

Through Know Your Rights presentations at Covenant House, the NYC child welfare agency, and in mother/child foster care group homes citywide, young women learned about child welfare law, how to address risks through preventive or mental health supports, and how to protect their families by asserting their rights.

When young people … Read More