We have so many ideas, hopes, and dreams for YTIA. Like the youths we are serving, sometimes we want to "grow up fast" and, as we know, that is the surest way to get into trouble. We want to be in existence for a long time and that means that we must move slowly but surely toward our goals. I think that our biggest frustration, right now, is that sometimes we feel that we haven't gotten "noticed," and that we should have by now. We keep trying to increase awareness of what we are doing and why but for some reason we are just not reaching the people who can help us become what we want to be. That sounds a lot like the young people we talk to on an almost daily basis. They have similar frustrations being "kids in care". That's why so many of the youths in foster care want to leave and venture out on their own; they know that they can "be somebody" if they just get out there. We are going to teach them and ourselves to just be patient and persistent. We'll get there!
Mary E. Valdez is one of the co-founders of YTIA, an attorney with an interest in (hopefully) making things a little bit better.