“I had a jar that was slowly opening because, there are kids that are lucky. They are fostered and find families. Then, there are kids like me.” –Bianca, aged out of foster care 2016.
There are moments that you meet someone and you know your life will never be the same. Meeting Bianca was one of those moments for me. Foster Arizona had held an art contest in late 2015 that provided an opportunity for kids in foster care to share with us, through art, what foster care was like through their eyes.
We had so many wonderful entries but, there was something about Bianca’s piece that kept drawing me in. Once we announced the winners, I reached out to Bianca to see if there was an opportunity to meet with her and learn from her. I am grateful for that time we had because, just four days later, Bianca aged out of foster care with no diploma and a whole bunch of dreams. She planted a seed in my heart that day that lead to the dream of Foster Arizona Housing Project. I have never forgotten that impactful conversation and, for the first time, I want to share some of it with you.
Interview Answers from Bianca-
(in regards to why the butterflies)
“I was thinking, let it be about kids that are in the system. The butterflies are us-even though
we came from something negative, we can turn it into something beautiful.”
(In regards to the symbol of the jar)
“The jar is our home. It’s very uncomfortable, locked in a place we don’t want to be. We are
squished. The jar represents the system. They are taking us away from homes that are very
negative. I was happy because I found a bed and there was food –it was a blessing to me – but, I
was separated from my siblings. It’s pretty messed up and unfair.”
“Kids that find foster homes are pretty blessed. They find people that want a child that is in
need-those who want a true family setting. I haven’t found the perfect match. I have been here
for 2 years and when kids leave and are going to a foster home, it fills me with joy knowing that
someone looks out for them.
“I had the jar that was slowing opening because there are the kids that are lucky- they are
fostered and find families and then there are kids like me.”
(Her next steps)
“I never went to school because I was always watching my brothers. I never got involved with
God. Now, I am give everything I can’t control to him. I’m going to finish high school. In
October, I will be done. January, I plan on starting community college.”
-End of Interview
I tried to get Bianca’s contact information before she walked out the doors of the group home
that had been her home for so long. I wish this wasn’t the final conversation I was able to have
with her. I wish I knew if she had achieved her dreams of going to school and reconnecting with
her siblings. And, I wish I could tell her about all the young adults we have been able to assist in
finding their way through the transition from foster care to independence, how this brief
encounter deeply impacted me and resulted in her impacting so many. I wish she knew that, 4
years later, I still think about her and pray she is safe.
We exist because every child deserves to know there is someone rooting them on to succeed.
They deserve to know they are wanted and their life matters in their community.
If you have space in your home and heart, I encourage you to consider making room for an
older teen in foster care. If that space in your home and heart is big enough, I encourage you to
consider taking in a sibling group so that they can have the joy of being together. There is
power in connections; especially sibling connections.
If you want to learn more about next steps to becoming a foster or adoptive parent, visit
Founder/CEO – Foster Arizona