Celebration of Pride and Family Reunification

June is a special time of year at CLC as we recognize both Pride Month and National Family Reunification Month! 

CLC believes all youth experiencing foster care should be treated with the same love and care as any other child. Unfortunately, many LGBTQ+ youth face trauma because of their gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation. CLC attorneys work hard to reduce that trauma by ensuring our young clients are in loving and affirming foster care placements, among other resources. All year long, CLC has resources available on our website for LGBTQ+ youth and their caregivers. 

As our staff renews their commitment this month to advocate for queer youth, we also remain dedicated to keeping families together. CLC’s family-focused vision includes reducing the number of children in the foster care system by supporting families before the need for system involvement arises. Our work advocating for our clients to help their families succeed illustrates this commitment, and improved outcomes for these populations demonstrates the effectiveness of our strategies. We have seen firsthand that when families in crisis are given meaningful support and treated with dignity, they can truly thrive. 

The Child Welfare Information Gateway has a new publication called Supporting Timely and Successful Reunifications complete with strategies and best practices to help caseworkers support families before, during, and after the reunification process. 

Staff Spotlight: Multidisciplinary Representation in Action!

This month we are spotlighting eight staff members who collaborated across disciplines, including CLC’s in-house mental health, housing, and developmental needs experts, to keep a family together.  

A young client in need of a new placement—while struggling with developmental disabilities and unaddressed mental health issues—needed intensive stabilization support. He wanted desperately to live with his grandmother, who had been the most consistent person in his life. Unfortunately, his grandmother did not have stable housing and lacked the financial ability to support them both. In addition to needing mental health support, his demonstrated developmental disabilities required specialized interventions. However, he had been incorrectly denied services by the Regional Center, which provides invaluable, lifelong services to individuals with developmental disabilities. 

Together the team mobilized to locate appropriate housing for the grandmother; ensure the grandmother became the designated payee for the SSI payments to which the client was entitled; and successfully appealed the Regional Center denial, resulting in the client finally receiving much-needed support. The team also secured appropriate mental health treatment and medication support for our client. 

These issues resolved so favorably that even the attorney for the county sent an email to our team telling them how impressed she was with their collaborative efforts and how their work had “changed the trajectory” of our client’s life. 

Congratulations to Alex Banner, Blakely Hamilton, Rosie Frihart, Dr. Kevin Jervik, Christopher Castillo, Beautiena Mataele, Kevin Flores and Princess Ramey! We applaud your team’s excellence in advocacy. Well done! 

Staff Travels to Latinx Conference

Six CLC staffers had an unforgettable experience in Houston during Cumbre Conference 2024, an annual gathering of people interested in developing skill, will, knowledge and capacity in Latinx communities.

The theme of the conference was Valentia, Justicia, Alegria (Valor, Justice, Joy). The conference focus on a variety of topics regarding the Latinx community including: Shades of Privilege: A Deep Dive into Colorism in Latin American Society; Brown and Blessed to be Brown, Examining and Addressing “Anti-indigeneity” In My Latinx Experience; and Yo No Sabo: Exploring Racial Dynamics, Cultural Gatekeeping, and the Lack of Identity of ‘No-Sabo Kids’ within the Latino Culture.

CARE team supervisor Desiree Ewing said it was “a powerful and thought provoking conference that really made me examine ways I can put the values around equity, identity, and social justice into practice both personally and professionally.”

Congratulations Graduates!

CLC staff members have had the honor of witnessing several clients don their cap and gown this month and graduate as part of the Class of 2024! We celebrate the success and achievements of clients like Vampi, who is now a high school graduate! Vampi will be attending Long Beach City College this fall semester. 

We are so proud of all our clients who have worked hard and overcome obstacles to achieve their dreams. 

For anyone who would like to support clients along their academic journey, please visit our donation page. 

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