The Board of Child Care provides youth with various opportunities to network and express their experiences while in foster care. Below is the story written by one of our youth who participated in panel discussion with other Maryland Foster Care Youth
When I was asked to participate in the MARFY foster care panel, I didn’t have to think twice about giving an astounding “Yes!”. I always enjoy talking about my foster care experiences and giving feedback on what works and what needs improvement. While participating in the panel, I was asked questions such as “How is my therapy going” and “how am I able to calm down when I’m escalated”, and my overarching response was relationships. At the Board of Child Care, I have formed strong relationships with Child Care Workers who understand me and want to see me succeed.
The panel also consisted of a networking session where I was able to exchange contact information with various stakeholders who will be able to help me achieve my personal and career goals, and gave me an opportunity to connect with the Maryland Foster Care Ombudsman who is always available to offer me support and resources when needed. I am so grateful to have been given this opportunity and hope to be able to attend this panel event next year!
Charlie Parker, the pioneering jazz saxophonist, once mentioned to one of his bandmates that he really liked country music. Puzzled, the band mate asked why. Parker responded “The stories, man. The stories.” The stories are the best part of graduation. The weeks leading up to graduation are full of events celebrating the successes of students. Today, we invite you to follow Charlie Parker’s example and listen to the stories of BCC graduates. Enjoy!