Defining Moments: How the Foster Care System Can Be a Stepping Stone

Kaysie Defining Moments
Defining Moments: Kaysie discusses her journey through adoption and foster care.

“I told them we were being taken and I didn’t know where we were going and when we were coming back.”

That’s how Kaysie, then 14, recalls telling her friends about the fact that she and her siblings were headed to foster care. What was supposed to be a weekend stay turned into seven years in the system.

Kaysie Defining Moments
Defining Moments: Kaysie shares the story of her journey through adoption and foster care to adulthood.

The words strength and resilience are often used to characterize youth in care. They got through it because they are tough, they’re successful because they have grit. We want to find reasons why some make it, are successful and some don’t.

Maybe for Kaysie this was the ability to be reflective, to think of her journey as just that and keep moving forward.

Kaysie has since earned a bachelor’s degree and is graduating from Rutgers University with a master’s degree in social work in two weeks. Recently, Kaysie, who has a talent for sewing, started making graduation stoles for youth in care to bring awareness to the 3 to 5 percent of youth who graduate from college.

Mira Zimet is an award-winning educational and documentary filmmaker. She launched The Storyboard Project in 2014 to give foster youth transitioning into adulthood the opportunity to tell their story using a visual medium. Follow her on twitter @SPBYourStory or Facebook at /thestoryboardprojectla

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