Toriandre Givens 

17 years in Oregon’s Foster Care System 

20 years old 


Tori spent 17  years in foster care due to his parents being incarcerated since he was three. Moving from foster home to foster home was rough on him. At age 19 he transitioned out of care and started the journey of becoming an independent adult. 

When Tori isn’t advocating, he enjoys spending his time writing, poetry. and riding horses. He also finds himself volunteering within his community where he finds his peace, by giving back. 

He is now a student at Portland Community College, where he is working towards his social work degree. Tori states that “I want to share my past experiences with other youth in hopes to teach them not to repeat the same mistakes I did when I was younger.” One thing Tori would like people to know about the foster care experience is to listen to the cries and pain of foster youth carefully because often enough they are overlooked and not heard. Tori strongly believes  “Together we can end the suffering  and enhance a better way of living.”

Some things that Tori is proud of being apart of in the last 5 years include being recognized at Portland Public school Young Gifted and black honoree, leading a march/walkout for students in Eugene Oregon to help fight injustice within the Eugene school district, and his active role in lobbying for foster youth rights. Tori wants to remind the youth to always ask questions. A quote that Tori lives by is “Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see a shadow.”— Helen Keller

Team(s) or Cohort(s)
2020 All-Stars