Each us shared our thoughts at the Thanksgiving table at the United States Capitol, as part of Foster Care Alumni of America's nonviolent protest to reform the foster care system.
Here is what I said:
"I am a parent now, and I know what parents are supposed to do: PROVIDE, PROTECT and PREPARE our children for adulthood.
"Neither my father nor the government fulfilled those roles for me. As a child, I was not provided for in terms of my physical and emotional needs. I was not protected from physical and sexual assault. I was not prepared for the adult world.
"Sometimes when parents can't do the job, older siblings step up to help. So, if the government won't provide, protect and prepare young people within the foster care system, who will?"
Everyone at the table, all of whom had grown up in foster care, answered, "WE WILL!"