Posts Tagged: Parent Advocates

Joining the System – Parent advocates who have been both child and parent of the system are a powerful resource to improve it.

The first time I visited my son in foster care, I walked into the same CPS office that I’d sat in as a child. I saw my son looking at me with tears running down his face the same exact way I’d looked at my mom. As I walked through the halls of the same courthouse I watched the designs on the floor just like I used to. I was livid that child welfare was … Read More

Power to the Parent — A NYC program puts service planning in the hands of parents and provides peer support

Parents fighting to reunite with their kids often feel like they have no say in their family’s service planning and are given services without being asked what they need. Many also feel alone in the process.

Several child protective agencies across the nation have responded by implementing family conferencing and parent advocate programs.

Michael Arsham, director of The Office of Advocacy for NYC’s Administration for Children’s Services, spoke to Rise about NYC’s Enhanced Family Conferencing Initiative (EFCI), … Read More

Mothers know best— Rise and CWOP leaders named to a new foster care task force

Rise Senior Parent Leader Jeanette Vega and Child Welfare Organizing Project Program Director Joyce McMillan have been appointed to the new Foster Care Interagency Task Force created by a City Council bill passed in November 2016 to address the needs of children in foster care.

The 21-member task force task will focus on developing recommendations for improving services for children in foster care and outcomes for those aging out of the system. It includes leadership of … 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