What follows are a few images from a project I’m developing on adult survivors of the foster care system. One of my first jobs out of college in 1988 was as a caseworker for the Catholic Home Bureau. I supervised 20 children put into foster care due to an array of problems faced by their parents: drug addiction, mental illness, and, at the time, AIDS. Decades later I reconnected with some of the kids from my caseload, now grown with their own families. Some have managed to break the cycle and prevent their kids from going into care. Others have struggled like their parents and lost custody. They now face the foster care system from the other side of the court room. I hope to tell their stories and explore the strengths and flaws in a system that affects nearly half a million children in the US annually.
The Foster Care System