As National Child Abuse Prevention Month (NCAPM) comes to a close, CLC is mindful of the importance of each and every child in foster care having a loving, supportive adult to help them navigate life’s many challenges. Read more in our April E-Newsletter.
RECOGNIZING CHILD ABUSE PREVENTION MONTH
As National Child Abuse Prevention Month (NCAPM) comes to a close, CLC is mindful of the importance of each and every child in foster care having a loving, supportive adult to help them navigate life’s many challenges. Indeed, the presence of a consistent and caring adult is proven to be one of the most significant factors in a child’s long-term success. Committed adults can help children heal from stress and trauma and build life-long resiliency. In our newsletter below, we are proud to introduce you to just a few of CLC’s dedicated staff members who have become trusted adults in the lives of their young clients. As you learn more about what these incredible advocates do, we invite you to think about the role you can play in the lives of children in foster care and beyond; big or small, we can all make a difference.
CLC Spotlight – CSEC TEAM
Children’s Law Center of California provides holistic advocacy to protect and promote the well-being and future success of our clients. Recognizing that youth in foster care are at heightened risk for commercial sexual exploitation, we have a dedicated team focused on meeting the needs of youth impacted by trafficking. This month we are featuring CLC’s Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children (CSEC) Team in honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM).
Working at the intersection of child abuse and sexual abuse, our CSEC Team provides legal representation and intensive services to clients who have experienced trafficking. CLC is a statewide leader in policy efforts across the state to address and prevent sexual exploitation. Our CSEC Team is constantly evolving and adopting promising practices to meet the diverse needs of the children and youth we serve. Our attorneys and case managers do whatever it takes to build rapport with our clients. They provide non-judgmental support and advocacy to elevate client voice and ensure that each young person has the chance to heal and thrive. Get to know Raechel, Friyana, and Ebony – just a few of the incredible members of our CSEC teams in Northern and Southern California.
Friyana Dadabhoy, CSEC Attorney, Los Angeles
A Los Angeles native, Friyana Dadabhoy was thrilled to join CLC and give back to her community. Friyana is a CSEC Attorney working in DREAM Court, a specialized court room for children who have been victims of commercial sexual exploitation. She brings a wealth of immigration and asylum experience to the firm. Friyana is a rock for her clients. She believes in the importance of staying connected to the community she serves, and she takes pride in being a role model. Friyana works hard every day to ensure that each young voice is heard at every stage of the court process.
What would you want others to know about CLC’s work? For every child who feels marginalized or invisible by the system, CLC provides that child with an advocate. As long as a CLC attorney is in their corner, the child will have a voice in the process and someone who cares about what they want and need.
What’s your favorite self-care practice? I’m a plant mommy! It’s very rewarding to see something grow and blossom.
Raechel Ibarra, CSEC Case Manager, Sacramento
Raechel Ibarra is a dedicated CSEC Case Manager in CLC’s Sacramento office. She is insightful, compassionate and a strong advocate for CLC’s clients. Raechel uses an intersectional lens in her work — recognizing that sexual assault, domestic violence, and child welfare can often overlap. Raechel brings her past experience working with Native American and Indigenous communities to CLC; she has helped CLC’s entire staff as well as our court partners to better understand and adopt best practices aimed at honoring each child’s heritage and culture.
What would you want others to know about CLC’s work? Children are the best teachers; they are the best part of working at CLC.
What’s your favorite self-care practice? Hiking and visiting news places near water. In fact, last year I did a hot springs chase!
Ebony Johnson, CSEC Case Manager, Los Angeles
During her 16-year career with CLC, Ebony Johnson has held many roles within the organization. She currently serves as a CSEC Case Manager, a role that provides her with some of her most difficult but rewarding work thus far. As someone who experienced the Los Angeles foster care system, Ebony possesses insight and the deep knowledge which allows her to better connect and support her clients. She is proud of the exceptional advocacy CLC provides for each and every client.
What do you love about CLC? I love the sense of community we develop with our colleagues. This work is hard, so I’m grateful to have a team who are just as dedicated as I am to this work.
What’s your favorite self-care practice? I’m still learning new ways to practice selfcare. However, as a vocalist, performing helps keep me grounded and lifts my spirits during difficult times.
Thanks to the young leaders of PILOTS (Progressive Individual Leadership of Teens), CLC clients were ready to return to in-person school with supplies on hand! The PILOTS program gives middle and high school students the opportunity to give back to their community through service projects. This spring, PILOTS participants collected supplies for over 100 clients. This support could not have come at a better time, as schools across Los Angeles County are slowly beginning to return to in-person instruction. School supplies are a critical part of learning and we are grateful for the support from the PILOTS and for the incredible leadership at the Crescenta-Cañada Family YMCA!
The legislative session is well underway! Click here to read more about the bills CLC is sponsoring this year. In addition to CLC’s legislative work, CLC is advocating for increased funding in the budget for dependency counsel throughout the state. Due to the pandemic and shortfalls in expected federal funding, the progress made in recent years to reduce caseloads for attorneys is slowly eroding. Earlier this month, the Senate Democrats reaffirmed their commitment to children in foster care by including dependency counsel funding in their Blueprint for 2021-22 Spending Priorities. This proposed funding will ensure that dependency counsel like CLC can continue to provide essential legal services for children and families during this unprecedented crisis.
This is a big first step, but we will need your continued support to ensure that families are given a voice and the tools they need to heal and succeed. Learn how you can take action.
Big Day of Giving 2021
The Big Day of Giving is right around the corner! We hope you will join us on May 5 at 6:00 p.m. as we kick-off the Big Day by attending CLC’s Big Day of Self-Care event. We are so grateful to be a part of the Sacramento community and this year we are giving back by spreading a message of self-love and self-care. Make a donation of $50 or greater and you will have the opportunity to receive a self-care box available for pick-up at our Sacramento Office. You can also show your support by sending a gift box to a CLC employee or client.
All funds raised on the Big Day of Self-Care and the Big Day of Giving will go directly toward supporting our child clients in the foster care system. Still not sure how to help? See below:
- Make a donation today, visit our website to learn how!
- Attend the Big Day of Self-Care and reserve a self-care box for you or a CLC employee/client.
- Share our social media posts with friends and family.
We are still in search of a matching donor. Make a difference in the lives of children in the foster care system by signing on to be our matching donor today!
Review the most recent legal developments in dependency case law with our April Legal Dependency Newsletter. Each month, our talented in-house Writ Team provides an in-depth analysis on case law related to child welfare. Read the latest issue here.
May is Foster Care Awareness Month
May is National Foster Care Month! With over 423,000 children and youth in foster care, it’s time to focus on how child welfare systems—especially in partnership with the legal and judicial communities—can support and strengthen families, prevent disruption, and promote reunification. Follow CLC on social media to join the conversation and learn how you can support children and families in your community.