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Melinda Gabree spent 5 years in Vermont's Foster Care System.

Melinda Gabree is going to be an amazing social worker, and already serves as a wonderful advocate for youth in foster care. Mindy will graduate with Bachelor’s in social work in 2013, at which time she plans to pursue her MSW. Currently Mindy mentors other foster youth in a professional capacity through Aris Solutions and stays involved in her State Youth Development Committee. She has expansive volunteer experience with both children and adults; working with everyone from preschoolers to the elderly. On November 26th, 2010 Melinda’s story was featured on the front page of The Burlington Free Press, the largest paper in Vermont. She opened up about her experience in a very poised and articulate way, and offered a face to youth in care. Putting her story out there to increase public awareness regarding foster care is something Melinda deserves recognition for. She has experienced many hardships that too often go along with foster care, such as sibling separation and multiple placements, but the beautiful thing is how dedicated and empathetic that will make Mindy as a future Social Worker. Her most recent volunteer work at the Integrated Arts Academy gives Mindy the opportunity to interact with children from a wide range of backgrounds, and she has made meaningful connections with many of them. One of Mindy’s adult supporters comments, “I’ve observed Mindy grow into a bright, resilient, joyful, humorous, conscientious, focused, and motivated young woman. In all of my years in the youth services field, Mindy has one of the most notable work ethics I have ever observed in a young person.” Mindy’s tireless work ethic will make her the kind of Social Worker all foster youth deserve.

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