‘Fostering Greatness’ is working to change the narrative for foster care alumni

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BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — For foster care alumni every journey is different. Every story is personal, but not without its challenges. That’s where Fostering Greatness Inc. comes in.

Fostering Greatness is a nonprofit organization founded in 2018 that assists transitioning foster care youth, young adults and alumni of color with the resources and skills they need to live full, sustainable and successful lives.

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Fostering Greatness

Youth and young adults who have aged out of the foster care system are among the most vulnerable populations in the United States. Fostering Greatness focuses on helping foster care alumni evolve from surviving to thriving.

“Many of the barriers that youth and young adults face when they transition out of the foster care system is instability,” says Leah Angel Daniel, Founder and Executive Director of Fostering Greatness, “They may not have anywhere to go. They may not know what their next plan in life is going to be, and they don’t have a very specific transitional plan.”

Fostering Greatness assists in that transition to help foster care alumni go from surviving to thriving. The organization helps to connect individuals to housing options, educational programs, and career and leadership development.

“Every case is different, every person is different, so we do a life plan with them to determine what their needs are,” says Daniel, “So is it educational endeavors? Is it leadership development? Is it apprenticeships for workforce development? We just assist them with whatever their journey is at that time.”

And it’s a journey that Daniel knows well.

“I grew up in the foster care system. I was in foster care from the age of 11 until I aged out at 21,” says Daniel, “What was different for me was the mentors that stepped into my life. They saw something in me that I didn’t see in myself, and it happened when I was 15. So for me that was the moment I realized that I could turn a negative situation into a positive outcome.”

Creating positive outcomes is at the heart of what Fostering Greatness is built on. It is also the reason that the organizations incredible volunteers are willing to share their personal foster care experiences in an effort to benefit others.

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Jeff Wick

Dominique Johnson is a volunteer at Fostering Greatness. She is a foster care alumni that is proud to be sharing her story to help others. Dominique has a master’s degree in mental health counseling.

“I think having the opportunity to talk about the positivity, and that some of us, a lot of us, have moved forward in life and become people who are successful, and caring, and want to give back to the community,” said Dominique Johnson, a volunteer and foster care alumni.

“Being able to assist someone who thought they didn’t have anyone and thought that no one cared. Being able to tell them, and teach them, that someone does care,” said Erica McDaniel, who is also a volunteer and foster care alumni.

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Jeff Wick

Erica McDaniel is a volunteer at Fostering Greatness. She was placed in foster care when she was nine years old and says it’s important for young people to know “you’re not a statistic, you are actually a person”

“For me to be able to volunteer in this way, it allows me to see that I’m healed. That I’m not struggling any more,” said Sherita Anderson-Bailey, “For me that is very valuable to be able to give back to a place that could have been to the detriment of me and my future.”

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Jeff Wick

Sherita Anderson-Bailey is a volunteer at Fostering Greatness. She is sharing her personal journey in foster care and her skillset as a marriage and family therapist to help people heal from their traumas.

Unique journeys, turned success stories. And now a joined mission coming together to bring hope to others transitioning out of foster care.

“I was ashamed of my story, I was ashamed of my circumstances, but today I own that story and those circumstances as a badge of honor” says Daniel, “I know my mother did the best she could with what she had, and she was able to just be a part in this story to assist me with fostering my greatness.”

Fostering Greatness is always looking for volunteers and donations to keep the organization’s mission going. If you would like to help you can donate here.





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