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Youth and Foster Alumni Stories
Bouncing from foster home to foster home since the age of three, all Marc ever longed for was to be with his older brother Matthew and have a family of his own. At age seven his dream came true.
Brooklyn, New York
Born in Belgium to Haitian parents who relocated to the United States on a visitor’s visa just three months after she was born, Merli Estime, 27, of Brooklyn, NY, emerged from a childhood of chaos in the U.S. foster care system with a college degree and firm rooting in a career as a youth advocate.
Although Aaron was adopted by a loving family, being in foster care caused many lasting effects. He now devotes his time to improving the system.
Ieesha Johnson had to grow up faster than other kids, taking care of four younger brothers and sisters while her mother struggled with addiction. In spite of the adversity, she went on to college, earned a graduate degree and plans to start an organization to help children in foster care transition into adulthood.
Bedford Hills, New York
Inspired by mentors in her own life, Tanya Cooper prevailed through 16 years of foster care to become a youth activist, writer and motivational speaker working to change the face of foster care one child at a time. She shares with us her courageous story of becoming her own hero.