Tuesday, Apr 16, 2019
Stability of A CASA Helps LGBTQ Foster Youth
David was 9 years old when he entered foster care. At first, he was happy when his aunt agreed to take him in. Later, she told David she wanted to adopt him. Then suddenly, when he was 12, she rejected him.
When David was at school, his aunt read his diary and saw a passage where David kissed a boy. She immediately called the social worker, and did not allow David to return to her home.
David was devastated.
Over the next few years, David lived in nine different foster homes in search of a family that would accept him and love him for who he was. David’s Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA), Ellen, stayed by his side the entire time, providing guidance and support. David desperately wanted to be accepted for who he was, and he longed to be adopted. At age 17, his dream came true. A gay couple adopted David! Today, David is happy and living his life as a gay man. He and Ellen continue to stay in touch.
Being in foster care is traumatic enough for most children and teens. LGBTQ foster youth have the added layer of trauma that comes with being rejected or mistreated because of their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. 30% of LGBTQ youth report physical abuse at the hands of a family member after coming out. CASAs can provide a safe, non-judgmental environment for children to express their thoughts and feelings about their situation and advocate for appropriate resources.
Sources: Human Rights Campaign, National CASA, Child Advocates of Silicon Valley, and Youth.Gov.
This Give OUT Day donate to help LGBTQ Foster Youth in your community. Donate here: https://www.giveoutday.org/c/GO/a/bemyadvocate