Rep. Runestad sponsors event giving foster kids a chance to tell their story

Categories: Runestad News,Runestad Photos

State Rep. Jim Runestad helped sponsor Oakland County’s second annual KidSpeak event in Pontiac on Monday, Jan. 26. The event gives a voice to area youth in the foster care system.

Runestad. Tedder KidSpeak

Rep. Jim Runestad, far right attended the second annual KidSpeak event in Oakland County on Monday, Jan. 26 with from left: Rep. Jim Tedder, R-Clarkston with Sheila Brown, Michigan Youth Opportunities Initiative, DHS; Khadija Fobbs, Michigan Youth Opportunities Initiative, DHS; Rep. Leslie Love, D-Detroit; Cherish Thomas, former foster youth/youth speaker; Sen. Dave Robertson, R-Grand Blanc.

“As a foster parent, I have seen what these kids go through and I am honored to help give them an opportunity to share their experiences,” said Runestad, R-White Lake Township. “The best way to improve the foster care system is to hear from the people who know it the best-the kids who spent years moving through it. As I begin my time in the Legislature, my goal is to take what these kids say to heart and try and work on policy that will improve what is a difficult time in these kids’ lives.”

KidSpeak is a signature event organized by the Voices for Michigan’s Children. Youth speakers provide testimony about their experiences, concerns and successes as they navigate their movement into adulthood. The event also gave state and local officials the opportunity to learn from the youth impacted by the foster care system, so that their decisions could lead to stronger, more efficient and more effective policy and practices.