What I love about Fostering Great Ideas, is the focus is not on outcomes but on relationships. As each program was developed, our care and attention was focused on our particular clients. In my case, the Mom who had her children removed from the home has the right to have someone walk alongside her as she navigates this foster care system and to provide support for a successful reunification. Other programs work with those children to provide them with dignity and understanding, and with the Foster Parents in ongoing meaningful relationships much like mine. But we were all focused on our priorities, as we should be, and we grew. And we learned. And we became really good at what we do. Then a few years ago, we looked up from our own work and we looked at each other and at these magnificent programs that we each had and we wondered how our programs could build relationships with each other. Here’s an example of how exciting that is.
One of my Moms came to Moms Matter and became a rock and an inspiration for other Moms who came in behind her. Marie came to us with few support systems and a hard life but has never given up on anything! We cheered her on to take her GED and when I heard she was ready to give up because the math was so hard for her I thought; “Doesn’t Marie deserve a tutor as much as children do? Hasn’t Marie come up in the FGI family like all our clients?” I reached out to our Tutor Match program and Hope Coudayre who ran the program agreed. Hope found Marie a tutor who agreed to tutor her for her GED math portion. This is how Fostering Great Ideas cares for everyone we come in contact with, in any capacity that we can.
My name is Marie and I’ve been a member of Moms Matter since 2020. Even though I’ve been reunited with my son and had another baby, I still attend and now I volunteer helping the new moms coming in. After my life calmed down a bit I decided to start the journey of furthering my education. 8th grade was the last grade I had completed and I really wanted to get my GED and start college so I could give my boys the life they so deserve.
I bought the book and started the adventure. I did fairly well until I got to the math section. I was denied ABC vouchers to attend school to help me, so I was stuck. I just couldn’t wrap my head around the math section. While I attended a video conference with FGI, I learned that FGI provided tutoring for children in foster care. I wasn’t a child in foster care and I didn’t have a child in foster care so I thought it wasn’t possible for me to take advantage of the tutoring. I should have known that Dena would make a way for me. And she did.
I started working with my tutor, Dean, in Aug of 2021 and I’ve completed about 4 yrs of math since then. I’m so close to my GED that I’ve already signed up for college courses. Dean has taught me soooooo much. He’s kind and patient and most importantly he’s smart. He’s a math genius and I couldn’t be more grateful for him. We work twice a week and I work daily outside of that. It’s not easy but it’s definitely worth it. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for my boys and myself.
From two separate programs, to a cadre of volunteers, to a Mom and her two little boys, this is what FGI is all about. Warms my heart.