Being a family leader in my community has afforded me the opportunity for my voice to be heard in many different ways. This role has allowed me to be transparent about the struggles and successes that I have experienced on my journey. Through sharing my story, it has also given me the opportunity to offer support and hope to other families. Lastly, I am able to provide honest feedback to agencies that serve families. All of these things, in my opinion, make family leaders an integral part of bringing about change within our communities.
As a foster mom and a mother of eight adopted, special needs children, we have had quite a journey. When we started foster care 15 years ago I began to realize that I would need to become a voice for these precious children. I became educated, found resources along the way, and met some amazing mentors to guide our family. Through these experiences we have been able to define legislation, make changes, and help many children in our community. Now I have the opportunity to help other foster and adoptive families through my work as a Certified Family Partner. My goal is to continue to make changes and help to serve the mental health needs of children in our community.
There was a time that I had become so convinced that the system knew what was best for my children and me, I had forgotten that my children and I were really the experts. With a lot of hard work and commitment we have experienced systems and individual change. Keep the Hope alive.
Stephanie Bryan, Mom and Change Agent
I have gained knowledge, received peer to peer support, and gathered information that I might not have known was available at other sites. TxFVN is all about listening and sharing how to get involved, advocate and make a difference. Most importantly my voice is being heard!