Fushkte V doesn’t spend much time sitting around. Fushkte has worked with Y.I.A. (Youth in Action) to help elders in the community with chores around the house. He placed ribbons around courthouses to focus attention on Child Abuse Awareness Month. Fushkte has volunteered to work with homeless pets, made signs and teeshirts for National Kick Butts Day (anti-smoking campaign), and appeared in several ads supporting non-profits.
One ad promoted child and family abuse prevention programs and one was designed to prevent dating violence. He even appeared with Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin in an ad created to recruit more foster families in the state. Living with different family members and friends through high school, it would have been easy for Fushkte to give up on getting an education. Instead, he started high school living in a group home, but attended summer school and worked at the local library.
He lived in a shelter while finishing his Junior year, then, when he “aged-out” of institutional care, found a house and a job. With determination and courage, he pushed himself to graduate. Today Fushkte is enrolled in college where he serves as the vice president of his student housing organization. Fushkte’s goal is to be a social worker for ICW (Indian Child Welfare) and open a shelter for citizens that need placement. He also wants to help Native Americans learn about and develop pride in their heritage and their culture.
He wants to teach native youth how to help their tribe and how the tribe may help them. He currently sits on the Olmulgee County Youth Leadership Board. Fushkte says, “I have experienced the ins and outs of this system. I know what youth in foster care need, what they would like, and how to go about helping them.
The feeling that comes from helping kids that have situations similar to mine or worse makes me feel good. I know that going through things alone is so hard, so confusing and so tough that if I can help enlighten foster youth on ways to better themselves it gives me a sense of self worth and puts me on top of the world.
There’s just no other feeling like it.” With his vast energy, understanding of what it takes to overcome adversity, and desire to make a difference, there is no doubt that Fushkte V is headed for the top of his world.