"As a social worker I never know what or how I will get each teenager to open up and feel safe, but yesterday, it was a binder."
We purchased several FYI Binders for our program after they came out and have handed them out to various foster youth in our homes. Yesterday I met with a new teen - she is 17 and graduated from high school early. She has only been in foster care a few days.
Her body language screamed that she was uncomfortable. She would not sit down, had her arms crossed and was facing a different direction while I was introducing myself. I started explaining my program and ways that I could assist her. She would only respond to questions with a head shake or a quiet yes or no. After a few minutes, I brought out the FosterClub binder and immediately got her attention. While I explained that these were special binders we bought for our youth and their purpose, she came closer. I suggested she sit down so she could see and she did...
By the end of going through the binder, she was holding it, feeling the texture of the folders and reading the resources on the pages. She opened up completely and we discussed her desire to go to college. We talked about her FAFSA and set up a meeting for next week to apply for a community college program in January. This morning, the foster parent emailed me and said that the youth immediately filled out her FAFSA and applied for three jobs after I left.
This testimonial was submitted by Life Launch Coordinator with Angels' Arms in Missouri.