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Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Spotlight on FCAA Ohio Members: Sarah Callihan

If you were to ask me to come up with one word to describe Sarah Callihan, that word would be Determination: “Firmness of purpose.”

Sarah is determined to change the outcomes of foster care youth – and she began first by building a successful young adult life of her own.

After “aging out” of foster care, Sarah was the first person in her immediate family to obtain a college degree and go on to graduate school. She earned a 4.0 last quarter. Sarah plans to use her Criminal Justice degree to become both a college professor and victim/youth advocate. She’d like to eventually go to law school and to attain her MSW, as well as becoming a foster/adoptive parent for teens.

Sarah benefited greatly from the independent living courses provided to her before she turned 18 years old. The life skills that she learned helped her to transition smoothly into college life, and be self-reliant when setting up a bank account. When Ohio’s state funding for Independent Living services was in jeopardy, Sarah testifed before the Ohio House of Representatives to advocate for this funding to be reinstated.

One of Sarah’s dreams is to create a safe place in Dayton neighborhoods for community members to go when they are in need of help and safety.

Sarah’s writing has been published by EMK Press in a book for teen adoptees titled, Pieces of Me: What Do I Want to Be, and she is also scheduled to have her writing published in Rhonda Sciortino’s From Foster Care to Anywhere publication sometime this year.

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