On June 5th, San Diegans across the 4th Supervisor’s District will vote on who they want to be leading and shaping policy on topics like child welfare, family support, and helping create meaningful opportunity for everyone. I have been thinking about the role of the County Supervisor in child welfare both because May is National Foster Care Month and because the research is clear about how quickly children (in and out of foster care) fall behind and stay behind.
Annie E. Casey Foundation: “10 Resources for Foster Parents”
This is a good time for me to reflect on my own life. Having grown up in a foster home with dozens of foster brothers and sisters in a home in Clairemont, I can feel the experiences even as I type. I remember vividly having a new sister show up with a couple trash bags of her belongings. I remember the fear and uncertainty on every face of my new brothers and sisters no matter what the circumstances were. I knew that expression well before I was old enough to really know what it meant.
It is about 6:30 a.m. and I spent the last couple hours reading evidence-based approaches to improve outcomes for children in school and in life. There is no shortcut to improving children’s lives but I see real opportunity to use the family-strengthening supports our County’s social safety net has to offer to make a difference. Expanding the home visit program to better prepare parents for the stress of parenting and critical developmental needs of newborns and infants will make a difference in the long-term. Managing that stress will reduce the type of violence I learned about in the scars and stories and tears of my siblings and the sometimes violent behavior they had as a result.
15-minute Podcast – Tony: Abuse, AIDS, and Compassion
I am grateful to have the opportunity to fight for children in foster care, to fight for parents and families to have more opportunity to lead a dignified life. Every day I wake up looking for another opportunity to push our region towards better supporting every young person. Education was a silver bullet for me and the only way we can expand its reach for many young people is to better support families so that children can thrive.
Read our StrongStarts4All plan to support every child