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Vol. 19, No. 1 • November 2014

The special adult in my life . . .

They say having at least one adult that you feel close to, trust, and can really depend on can make a big difference when you are in foster care. In the last issue of Fostering Perspectives we asked young people in foster care if they have a person like that in their life, and to tell us what makes them so special. Here's what they had to say.

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First Place

by Maria, age 15

Being in foster care it is really hard to trust people, depend on them, and feel close to them . . . . I've been in foster care for three years. I have been moved to four different foster homes.

[But] in the foster home I'm in now I have those three things: I can trust them, depend on them, and I feel really close to them. I feel close to them like they are my birth parents. I choose them as my special people because they treat me the way any kid wants to be treated. They pay attention to me, they make good decisions for me, and we spend time like a normal family. They don't treat me like I'm in foster care. They treat me as if I was their own child. I love that about them.

Maria will receive $100 for winning first prize in the writing contest.

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Second Place

by Megan, age 11

I can really trust my mom because she is very loyal to me. I can definitely depend on her because one day she saved my life. My brother and me were running out of Wal-Mart and a car was coming and only my brother saw it. So my mom ran to come and grab me and she saved my life. The car didn't even see me running. [My mom] almost got hit. Because of that I have a scar that reminds me my mom is my hero. Even though I'm in foster care I will never forget her. My mom means the world to me.

Megan will receive $50 for winning second prize in the writing contest.

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Third Place

by Elizabeth, age 14

n my life I have had five people that been there for me. The first was Mrs. Velma. She is one of the first foster homes I been through and she was awesome. She would always be there for me when I needed someone. We still keep in contact and I promised her I am totally going to visit her again because she gave me a home and food and, most importantly, LOVE. Many people won't do that, and she did.

My foster home right now is Mr. Larry and Mrs. Margaret. They are so nice to me and want the best for me. I told them that they can be my "grandparents" because they don't want to lose contact with me when I move. They make sure I stay positive and they just love me. Of course, I love them back.

The last two people are Mr. Steven and Mrs. Cielo, my soon-to-be parents. I am so happy I met them because now I have the family I always wanted.

Elizabeth will receive $25 for winning third prize in the writing contest.

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Adults I Can Trust
and Depend On

The children below received $15 for having their work published in Fostering Perspectives.

The special person in my life is my foster parent. . . . She is pretty stern, but loving. People think she's mean, but you have to get the story before you get the picture. She's special to me because I can count on her....She loves me.... Even though we go through bumpy roads [from] time to time, she is the person I can come to for anything....Since she entered that door and became my foster parent--part of my family--my life changed.

My future changed. For the better.

--Ericka, age 16


My brother, sister, and I were in foster care for about two years. Then we went back home to our birth family. Since we went home we [still] go to Mr. Kelly and Ms. Carol's house a lot. Mr. Kelly is a race engineer. He takes us to the NASCAR races. He is calm. He is also a great cook. He is amazing.

Ms. Carol is the most greatest girl I have met. She is playful and funny. She is caring and polite. She is a loving person.

Mr. Kelly and Ms. Carol are very strict but love us a lot. We are very glad we have them in our lives

--Preston, age 11


When I first came into foster care. . . . I couldn't understand why my foster parents cared so much about me. . . .

Now this is what I call my home. . . . They are helping me seek my future career and giving me love and support to help me flourish into a successful young adult.

Without them, I would have given up my dream to go college and make something of myself.

-- Sierra, age 17


I entered foster care when I was one year old. My foster parents adopted me in 2010. My parents are special to me because they cook for me and take care of me.

--Caroline, age 7


My adoptive parents give me stuff like food, take me out to eat at McDonalds, and to Wal-Mart to look at book bags. [My adoptive mother] is too sweet--I love her. I trust [her] the best. She helps me. She gives me kisses before I go to bed.

--Byanca, age 8


I can trust and depend on Grannie Annie, my foster mom. . . . I can tell her anything. She takes us to church every Sunday. . . . She supports me in everything, like school and sports. I have learned lots of new things since I've been here. I love this family. I do not think my life could be better.

--Dakota, age 9


The people I trusted while I was in foster care and am now adopted by are Mr. William and Mrs. Ann. . . . Without them I don't know where I would be or go in this world. . . . These are the two people I trust the most and the people that have impacted my life.

--Anayah, age 13


I went back to my mom but we visit my foster family often because we love them so much. . . . The things they have given me and the places they have taken me are unbeatable. . . . But the thing that they have given me the most of is love and compassion.

Nothing can beat that, not even a trip across the world.

--Austin, age 13


Fostering Perspectives' Next Writing Contest

First Prize: $100 • Second Prize: $50 • Third Prize: $25

If you are under 18 and are or have been in foster care, please send us a letter or short essay in response to the following:

Parenting can be hard work. What do your foster, adoptive, or kinship parents do to take care of themselves so they can do a good job taking care of you?

Deadline: February 3, 2015

Anyone under 21 who is or has been in foster care or a group home can enter. E-mail your submission to [email protected] or send it via U.S. Mail your entry to:

John McMahon, Editor
Fostering Perspectives
Jordan Institute for Families
UNC-CH School of Social Work
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3550

Include your name, age, address, social security number (used to process awards only, your confidentiality will be protected) and phone number. In addition to receiving the awards specified above, winners will have their work published in the next issue of Fostering Perspectives. Runners-up may also have their work published, for which they will also receive a cash award.

We’re Also Seeking Artwork and Other Writing from Children and Teens in Foster Care
Submissions can be on any theme. Submission requirements described above apply. If sent via U.S. Mail, artwork should be mailed flat (unfolded) on white, unlined paper.