On October 23rd, National Crittenton President Jeannette Pai-Espinosa moderated the panel discussion, “Supporting Families Post Permanence and Pregnant & Parenting Young People in Care: Family and Youth Perspective” at the eighth Wicked Problems of Child Welfare conference presented by the Children’s Home Society of America and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Social Work’s Jordan Institute for Families.
I never knew there was an entire month dedicated to Domestic Violence Awareness. What started as a “Day of Unity” in 1981 quickly evolved into an entire week of events, to what we now know as Domestic Violence Awareness month. I find it rather ironic that in school we all learn about the celebrations that education outlets think we must learn and celebrate. At 15, I became a victim of domestic violence, and at just a few months old, my own daughter was witnessing it firsthand. No one talked about domestic violence, and therefore I hid my embarrassment hindering me from the possibility of escaping the situation I had found myself in.
On Monday March 21, 2016 I spoke at the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women Meeting (UN), at the United Nation’s New York Headquarters. Me, the girl from downtown Charleston, SC, who at one time did not believe in herself enough to share her voice with anyone.
Sometimes I can’t believe this is life. I think it finally came together on a Saturday night when I was introducing BOLD to the folks at the 5th Annual National Crittenton Fundraiser in DC. It’s such a lovely event and being there put our last meetings in perspective:
America loves a scandal, but America hates a struggle. While our country rages over abortion rights and access to contraception, the Florence Crittenton Programs of South Carolina are quietly providing sanctuary and real-time assistance to the most vulnerable members of society — low-income single women and their children.
We have a long history as advocates for young women and girls
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