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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Winter 2010 Ohio YAB Update


The Ohio chapter of Foster Care Alumni of America is privileged to serve, side-by-side with Doris Edelmann of Montgomery County Children Services, as primary adult facilitator of the Overcoming Hurdles in Ohio statewide foster care youth advisory board.

Recent Ohio YAB Events
July 28, Foster Care Panel for Capital Law School
Aug. 4, Adoptee Panel for Capital Law School
Aug 31, Lorain County YAB Training
Sept. 10, Workshop for NILA Conference
Sept. 24, Judicial Teleconference on Youth Voice in Court
Oct. 2, 2010 CASA Conference Youth Panel
Dec. 6, Disproportionality Symposium

2011 Ohio YAB Officers
President Cieria Rodriguez-Toney, Lorain
Media Spokesperson Dauntea Sledge, Franklin
Treasurer Traci Justice, Athens
Secretary Cheslie Akers, Miami
Parliamentarian Roneshia Finney, Montgomery
*Elections for Vice President will be held in January.

2011 Ohio YAB Meeting Dates
Jan. 20 at Lifeway for Youth, 3800 Lacon Drive
April 21 at ODJFS Air Center, 4020 E. Fifth Ave.
July 21, location TBA
Oct. 20, at ODJFS Air Center, 4020 E. Fifth Ave.

Ohio YAB Officers Retreat
Many thanks to the Dave Thomas Foundation for sponsoring the 2011 Ohio YAB Officers Retreat and the cost of food and beverages for youth during Ohio YAB Quarterly Meetings.

Spotlight on FCAA Ohio Members: Antonio Frierson



From the time that I have met Antonio (“Tone”) Frierson, I have found him to be steadfast, reliable and sincere. Tone is dedicated to the people he loves and the causes to which he has dedicated his heart. His deepest desire is to increase the amount of resources available for the Ohio’s 1,300 youth who “age out” of foster care each year.

I first met Antonio in 2008, at a teen event in Cleveland for teens in foster care. He and his fellow members of TAGyc, Cuyahoga County Children Services teen advisory group/youth council, were presenting an Orientation to Emancipation. One of the first things I noticed was the passion, energy and creativity of the activities, and Tone’s infectious sense of humor.

Our paths continued to cross during Teen Fairs for foster youth, annual FCAA Ohio Thanksgiving dinners for young people in and from foster care, and statewide Independent Living Summits. I watched Tone reaching out to younger foster care youth, and encouraging them to make good choices. I witnessed him advocating for better resources for young people transitioning from foster care to adulthood, particularly regarding housing.

As I grew to know Antonio better, I saw glimpses of his serious side. I heard him speak from the heart at events for foster youth. I saw his desire to constantly grow and learn new things. I witnessed his heartfelt appreciation and acknowledgement of every person who built into his life, including and especially Cuyahoga County caseworker, Seanine Cook.

This fall, as I listened to Antonio participate on a radio interview by Public News Service, I continued to be impressed by his positive attitude and vision for the future. Having benefitted from Seanine Cook’s role as a mentor in his life, Tone now wants to be a role model to foster youth, and to increase the circle of support available in each youth’s life.

I believe that Tone has the capacity to ignite a spark of passion and energy in every person he touches.

(But I'm still not sure why Tone looks like he is in heaven in this picture :)

Thursday, December 9, 2010

2nd Annual Filling Family Portraits: Adoption Advocacy Event


Who: Adoption advocates, adoptive families, adoptees 
When: Tuesday, November 30th, 2010, from 12:30 - 1:30 p.m.
Where: The Ohio Statehouse, Atrium Room, 77 S. High St. Columbus OH 43215
Partners Included: OACCA, PCSAO, Ohio Adoption Planning Group, Adoption Network Cleveland, OFCA, Ohio CASA, ODJFS, Children's Defense Fund, National Center for Adoption Law and Policy, IHS, and Voices for Ohio's Children.


Speakers:
·         Rev. Johannes J. Christian
·      Amanda Dunlap, Foster Care Alumni of America Ohio chapter
·      State Senator Jon Husted
·      State Representative Linda Bolon
·      Michael and Michelle Morris, Adoptive Family
·      Cindy Deal, Northeast Ohio Adoption Services
·         Nikaeda Griffie, Summit County Children Services
·      Rita Sorenen, Dave Thomas Foundation

Did You Know?
Over 3,000 Ohio children are waiting to find permanent families.