Posts Tagged: Parent Advocate

Uplifting Every Voice – Together we can change the perception of parents created by the child welfare system

It was a knock on my door in the middle of the night in 1999 that altered the trajectory of my life. I was residing in a family shelter with my 2,4, and 6-year old boys when it happened. I looked through the peephole and saw an African American man and woman. They were caseworkers from New York City’s Administration for Children Services (ACS).

They told me they were there to remove my children because I … Read More

How I reclaimed my son after reunification

As a parent advocate, I used to advise parents in my support group about the reality of what they would face once their children returned home from foster care. I’d tell them that kids often act out, or don’t seem happy to be home. I’d tell them to try to stay calm and to think about their family’s needs and how to address them. I would tell parents, “I was you, I understand.”

DREAM COME TRUE

My … Read More

Words, Not Fists – To get my daughter home, I had to change how I fight

I am 51 years old with four children—Adam, 31; Osman, 27; Julio, 17; and Samantha, 10. Samantha came home to me from foster care five months ago.

Ever since I was a child, I’ve struggled with depression and addiction.

My childhood was painful. My mother died when I was 7 years old. One day she went into the hospital, never to come back out. I remember the cops at the door to say that my mother had … Read More

Advice from a Parent Advocate: Making your voice heard in case planning

Interview with Sherry Tomlinson, a parent leader in Columbus, Kansas

For more than 15 years, Sherry Tomlinson worked in the child welfare system. Then she lost her son to it. Today, she runs a recovery and jail ministry in Columbus, Kansas; works alongside an attorney representing parents in family court; and is an active member of the Birth Parent National Network, a national coalition of parents affected by the child welfare system.

As a parent helping … Read More