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“I wish for my story of paralyzing fear, shame, and loneliness resulting from abuse by my teacher to be the last in Kentucky.”

By Kotomi Yokokura, BASW Intern at Kentucky Youth Advocates I was in high school when my teacher began texting me during and outside of school hours. He would work to gain my trust, offering me homemade food and taking interest in my personal life, all behind the closed doors of his office. While I did not know it at the time, these texts and one on one meetings would be the beginning stages of grooming [...]

By |2023-03-02T15:43:36-05:00March 2nd, 2023|Blog, Child Welfare & Safety|

Engaging Those With Lived Experience in Kentucky

By Tamara Vest, MSSW Intern at Kentucky Youth Advocates For many years, Kentucky has attempted to provide a space where individuals with lived experience in the child welfare system have an opportunity to authentically engage in systems change and practices. Specifically, there has been a large focus on youth engagement among foster youth and alumni. Only recently has the Department for Community Based Services expanded that arena to include birth parents and other caregivers and [...]

By |2022-10-20T09:33:32-04:00October 19th, 2022|Blog, Child Welfare & Safety|

Making Kids Count in the 2022 Election

Kids cannot vote, but you can ensure that their voices are heard by engaging with candidates in local, state, and federal elections. The local, state, and federal leaders we elect determine policy that will impact our daily lives for what may be generations to come. But how often do we pause to consider–specifically–how our choices at the ballot box will impact us, and particularly young children who depend on us to make the right [...]

Launching the Journey to Success Campaign in Kentucky

By Brittani Carlton, Intern at Kentucky Youth Advocates Thousands of young adults exit foster care, often without the preparation or support they need to succeed in adulthood. With limited resources and services, their paths can lead to homelessness, more trauma, and economic disadvantage. It is imperative to listen to the voices who have endured these experiences and traumas in order to provide advocacy that is relevant to the needs of the individuals in and aging [...]

Federal Investments in School-Based Health

By Crystal Willis, MSSW Intern at Kentucky Youth Advocates In March, Congress made a commitment to the nation's most vulnerable children by investing in school-based health services. Signed into federal law on Tuesday March 15, the 2022 Omnibus Appropriations package includes $30 million for school-based health centers. This is a $25 million increase from fiscal year 2021, which will allow for more services to be provided and is a tremendous win for children and families [...]

By |2022-04-04T15:31:27-04:00April 4th, 2022|Blog, Education, Health|

Removing Barriers for a Parent & Their Children to Leave an Abusive Relationship

By Shontelle Davis, MSSW Intern at Kentucky Youth Advocates Kentucky has one of the highest rates of domestic violence in the United States, with 45.3 percent of women and 35.5 percent of men experiencing domestic violence in their lifetime. Domestic violence can take many forms, including chronic yelling, controlling behaviors, isolation, threats of suicide or murder, threats involving weapons, threats to take the children, and serious injuries.  Survivors of intimate partner violence lose a total [...]

By |2022-03-24T09:40:43-04:00March 24th, 2022|Blog, Child Welfare & Safety, Economic Security|

The Time Is Right to Support Social Workers

By Crystal Willis and Shontelle Davis, MSSW Interns at Kentucky Youth Advocates Although the field of social work is broad, we all have one common goal – to leave this place BETTER than we found it! The role of a social worker is to identify and address the needs of individuals, families, and communities. Social workers take on many roles that include advocating, educating, researching, lobbying, case management, therapy, and much more.  March is Social [...]

By |2022-03-22T18:57:10-04:00March 22nd, 2022|Blog, Child Welfare & Safety|

Actions to Mitigate Food Insecurity in the United States

By Nikky Patel, Intern at Kentucky Youth Advocates In the past year, many Americans have experienced a lack of access to healthy food and, although food insecurity is not a new issue, we have vividly felt its effect throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the federal government and Congressional leaders have been responsive to this issue and continue to apply lessons learned throughout the pandemic to take action that will address hunger and food insecurity in [...]

Social Workers are Essential

By Kayce Dallas, MSSW Intern at Kentucky Youth Advocates Before I started graduate school for my Master of Social Work, I had no clue that social workers can work in a variety of areas. I think most people believe social workers are just the ones who remove kids from homes, but that is not always the case. If you want to know the many roles a social worker can play check out this resource from [...]

By |2021-03-31T16:20:08-04:00March 23rd, 2021|Blog, Child Welfare & Safety|

Thank You! Kentucky Kids Share Talents in Children’s Advocacy Week Virtual Art Show

By Melissa Collins, Child Welfare Intern at Kentucky Youth Advocates Children’s Advocacy Week is fully underway, and while it may look a bit different than years past, one thing has remained the same: showcasing talented youth from across the Commonwealth! In past years, Kentucky kids have shared their talents on Children’s Advocacy Day by performing during the Rally for Kentucky Kids in the Capitol Rotunda and creating artwork to hang in the tunnel between [...]

By |2021-02-05T16:28:54-05:00February 3rd, 2021|Blog|
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