It’s the most wonderful time of the year…or so the song goes, right? According to the song, kids should be “jingle belling” and our collective hearts should be glowing. I’m “all in” for living in that world. However, reality is often far from this lovely image of this hypothetical holiday-world. The bigger reality is that the holidays can be a very difficult time. Our kids and families are no exception and, in fact, their traumatic experiences and situations can make it the most difficult time, far from wonderful.
The holiday season can truly be a magical time for us all. It is wonderful to spend time with family, have big holiday dinners and, of course, give and receive presents. It is a time to celebrate and Give Joy. But for some, the holidays can be absolutely dreadful. Holidays are expensive and, as a struggling parent, fear can take over, knowing that you won’t be able to provide for your child. A distressing reminder that due to current circumstances you cannot make ends meet let alone make the holidays special.
The conclusion to our discussion on Social Justice manifested through the Family Care Network’s Practice of Caring, CEO/Founder Jim Roberts will focus on one of the most important roles he play as the Leader of this organization; but one we all must embrace–Advocating for individuals whose lives have been negatively impacted by Social Injustice!
All of us at the Family Care Network are incredibly grateful for the opportunity to provide for the health, welfare, maintenance, and protection of our most vulnerable populations: victims of neglect, abuse, and social injustice through our Practice of Caring–Social Justice at work. Working hand-in-hand with direct treatment services, delivered through multiple programs, is our passion and commitment to Prevention Services. Effective Social Justice is the prevention of neglect, abuse and injustice. Read the 6th edition of "The Practice of Caring" to learn more about how we work to break the "cycle of trauma".
Homelessness has become a major social problem in every major US city, but also in many smaller, even rural areas; even here on the Central Coast. The youth we serve are the most at-risk of becoming homeless and FCNI works hard to provide housing accommodations to children, families, and youth in our care. CEO Jim Roberts, continues his discussion on Social Justice through the Family Care Network’s Practice of Caring as he breaks down the the treatment and skills necessary for the children, youth and families in our care to overcome all obstacles that might prevent them from living healthy, safe and productive lives.
To no fault of their own, youth exiting the Foster Care System are more susceptible to homelessness, depression, and unemployment. Without support, they are often unable to access basic care or life needs, and the implications of that can be devastating. At Family Care Network, we believe all Foster Youth deserve to be treated with respect and be provided every opportunity for success as any other youth in society. The Family Care Network is in the business of providing Social Justice, i.e., what is necessary for the health, welfare, maintenance and protection of our most vulnerable populations; victims of neglect, abuse and social injustice. Read Part 4 in our series, The Practice of Caring, by our CEO/Founder Jim Roberts to hear a brief history of foster care, the Independent Living Program, and how we support Transitional Aged Youth establish pathways to self-sufficiency and mental wellbeing.
Rosa entered college undocumented and transitioning from foster care. These two life experiences meant that she faced more obstacles than almost all of her freshmen peers. The only thing that was for certain for Rosa, was that nothing was certain. She had dreams--big dreams--but she wasn’t fully sure if they would be attainable. All she really knew was that she had the drive and the determination to do her part to achieve her goals; all she needed was a little support to go the full distance.
Gratitude can come from suffering, hope from devastation, and intentionality from chaos.
For the better part of five decades, I have worked with Foster Parents. This group of extraordinary, unique individuals have certainly left an indelible, positive imprint on my life. I am not sure I have the skills to craft an appropriate expression of gratitude I have for those who have turned their homes and lives into sanctuaries, hospitals, safe havens, classrooms and sometimes even battlefields for our children and youth (and not without costs)... but here I go.
I foster every day...I encourage and promote growth and healing in the lives of my bio children and in the youth who I mentor. If I were just to tell you that I foster, you probably and most likely, would think that I am talking about “foster care.”