I came to my first DCFYI event in 2011 because I wanted to get to know my community in a meaningful way. Within a year or so of attending events, I was matched as a mentor with a young woman who was aging out of foster care. Every time we see each other, she makes me laugh -- she has a great sense of humor. By her example, she also inspires me to accomplish my goals one step at a time, all while being true to myself. And it has also been eye-opening and refreshing to get to know new parts of DC -- including Southeast and Northeast neighborhoods -- and to now be able to say those neighborhoods are a part of my community as well.
My background is as a foster care social worker so having the opportunity to know my mentee and other FYI youth helps me stay in touch with my roots. As a social worker in Florida I knew LGBT families who were denied the opportunity to adopt children. Many states still currently have barriers restricting the ability of LGBT individuals and couples to adopt. Being queer, I have appreciated that FYI is open to and affirming of all individuals and all families.
I encourage you to join in for the next FYI event, and then join in again a second and third time. You'll be glad you did.