6 years in out of home care in California
Elian Ortiz experienced kinship care with 3 different caregivers throughout 6 years of her youth. She went on to obtain a Bachelors degree in Social Work and minor in Child Development. Upon graduating, Elian was selected to be an All-Star Intern with FosterClub and gained skills engaging with foster youth as well as skills in sharing her lived experience to bring awareness to the needs of other youth and caregivers in kinship care. Once completing this internship, she became a Foster Care Social Worker for a Foster Family Agency serving families in the southern California counties of Los Angeles, San Bernardino, and Inland Empire for two and a half years.
Elian is currently pursuing opportunities assisting migrant children in expediting reunification with their families and being removed from the migrant children detention centers they are being held in. She is a Mexican immigrant herself who lost her only caregiver, her mother, at a very young age. The experience of being an unaccompanied minor without a legal guardian growing up led her to become passionate advocating for change within the foster care system and providing support to caregivers and youth alike as they navigate difficult circumstances. Caregivers and youth deserve and are worthy of being given the tools to persevere and thrive. Elian strives to support families on the micro and macro level to get to the root of the obstacles and needs that many families face within these systems.