Real Stories

Janae Gipson’s Foster Care Story

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My name is Janae Gipson. Looking at my life now, you would not expect such a turbulent past. Due to parental neglect, I was placed in foster care with my brother at the age of 14 months. On the outside it was no surprise because I come from a family that has spent generations in foster care. You could say this was our personal family heirloom. Though I was just another generation to enter the cycle, this was an experience no one could have prepared me for.

For me, foster care was home after abuse, neglect, and emotional damage. I had been through seven homes by the age of seven. I was finally placed in a loving home, which I am glad to finally call family. Having to go through adolescence with the confusion and insecurity left behind by foster care, my teen years were unfortunately filled with depression. I struggled to find myself amidst such burdening emotions. I had to deal with my past face to face. Over the almost fatal years, I learned to not only embrace my past, but to help others who need guidance. Despite the statistics, I was able to enter UCLA as a Neuroscience major, so I can help those going through mental and emotional hardship. To some, I am a miracle, but I strive to make my story much more. I strive to make a successful future for kids in foster care not a miracle, but an expectation.