Paulina Astafuroff spent 10 years in California's foster care system.

No longer in foster care but living in an adoptive home, Paulina Astafuroff was involved in foster care for 10 years and exited such care in April of 2010. She continues to provide care for her birth mother and her birth grandmother. She remains a role model for her peers. She does well in high school where she is a senior with a 3.5 gpa. She is enrolled in DVC community college taking psychology courses.

In the summer of 2010, SOAR for Youth created a junior counselor position on a trial basis. Paulina competed for and received the position for the Prepare to SOAR academy. She wanted to pay back for the assistance she had received from SOAR. First year students look up to her and bond quickly with her. Given the success, SOAR Board of Directors agreed to allow a successful Junior Counselor, Paulina, to continue as a Junior Counselor with her Prepare to SOAR class for subsequent academies. Paulina volunteered and spearheaded the SAT and ACT training efforts for SOAR youth. She built a team of teachers and coaches consisting of her high school classmates. The team researched and prepared the curriculum. Paulina led the first SAT and ACT workshop for SOAR for Youth in September. Her leadership and contribution to help younger SOAR youth are to be commended.

At the beginning of the school year, Paulina volunteered to be a SOAR academic advocate for one of the girls for whom she had been a junior councilor. Paulina meets with the middle school young lady once a week to encourage her to do well. Perhaps the girl’s gpa will rise as a result of Paulina’s efforts.

Team(s) or Cohort(s)
2014 Outstanding Young Leaders