Why Should I go to the Maryland Older Youth Summit?
Because it will be fun!
Join us for dance, music, a BBQ, and many sporting activities such as basketball, volleyball, 3-legged races, relay races and fun with water balloons). We will also feature vendors from community-based programs, door prizes, and bags.
Where is the Summit?
Druid Hill Park
August 15, 2013
(Rain Date August 20, 2014)
2600 Madison Avenue
Baltimore, MD 21217
12pm - 5pm
The flyer for the summit is right here!
Don't forget to register!!!
On June 18, 2014 the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services Child Welfare Division hosted its 37th
Annual Foster Family Picnic at the Smokey Glen Farm located on 16407 Riffle Ford Road in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The event hosted foster families, youth, family court judges, legal aid attorneys, and local politicians from across the county. This interactive event was filled with entertainment, music, dance, and fun activities for all ages. The event exemplified the core values within the Youth Matter Initiative occurring across the state of Maryland where youth and adults come together to enhance their relationship, learn from one another, and feel comfortable with being themselves.
During the recognition ceremony, 24 youth were honored by the agency’s administration for earning their high school diploma. Each youth was awarded with privately funded scholarships raised through local fund raising efforts and community outreach by agency staff. Youth will use the scholarship towards their post-secondary education at public universities and colleges across the state of Maryland. Here are the names of some of the youth honored during the conference:
- Kathryn Flemming
- Barbara Hounsou
- Tracey Jerome
- Ernest Johnson Jr.
- Michael Kamara
- Princess Kingston
- Cameryn Little
- Brenda Lopez
- Laura Medrano
- David Potter
- Jasmine Thapa
- Daniel Waclawiw
Shanna Green doesn't hold back on the details of her difficult childhood in foster care and the missteps she had in early adulthood, hoping her story and later success will inspire others.
The Baltimore native, who was in more than 20 foster care placements, says she experienced various forms of abuse before running away to live with a female companion at age 15. To survive, she said, she sold drugs, hung out with gang members and sold her body.
Green graduated from Morgan State University with a degree in sociology, the fruits of a long climb out of devastation. At the school, she met her fiance and has planned a wedding for October.
"I knew my whole purpose in life is to tell my story because I went through so much," said Green, 26. "A lot of people can survive it but they can't forgive it, and I forgive it."
Green, who said she was placed in foster care at age 2, felt the support she got from the foster care system was inadequate, and struggled to deal with her emotions and the trauma she experienced. She said she attempted suicide five times.
"I didn't want to listen to anyone," she said. "You couldn't give me a hug because I wouldn't receive it."
Green said she was charged with carrying an illegal gun after getting pulled over in Virginia with gang members and spent a month in jail. She experienced bouts of homelessness after leaving the woman she had moved in with.
One day, at age 19, Green was walking from a bar in Pen Lucy when something inside her told her to look up, she said. Ahead of her was Victorious Ministries International, and she later joined that church, finding new family, stability and support. She got her high school diploma from Crooked Places Made Straight Christian Academy in Philadelphia, which had its accreditation revoked last year after a Baltimore Sun investigation found foster care youths were getting diplomas after only a three-hour exam.
After some difficulty gaining admission to Morgan because of her criminal record, Green began working in college on projects to support foster youths. She met President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama at a mentorship event in 2010, which she described as "huge" for her.
Now, Green wants to become a motivational speaker to help others who have been in foster care or had troubled backgrounds. She is working on a book about her life story.
"My goal was just to encourage other foster youth to come to college as well," she said. "Just because we don't have family doesn't mean we have to be alone in society."
Read more: http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/education/bs-md-graduating-online-20140518,0,3357334.story#ixzz32C2jtSa9