Youth Voice Writing Contest 2022 Winners & Finalists
Each year, Fostering Media Connections hosts the Youth Voice Writing Contest — an opportunity for youth with experience in the child welfare or juvenile justice systems to write about their experiences. This year, writers were asked to submit essays or creative poetry describing what a world without foster care, homelessness, or the juvenile justice justice system would look like, the impact of policy on family reunification, or what safety looks like to them. These are the winners and finalists of this year’s Youth Voice Writing Contest.
Through Rose-Colored Lenses
Youth Voice Writing Contest essay winner Jessica Castillo writes about how safety can sometimes be with a foster youth's biological family.
Youth Voice Writing Contest poetry winner Marqueishia Jackson writes about what safety looks like to her.
From Pain to Perseverance
Youth Voice Writing Contest essay finalist Essence Thomas writes about how dance became her safe place in the midst of instability.
Safety Isn’t Real
Youth Voice Writing Contest poetry finalist Tierra Lamore writes about how safety can be a social construct.
Look Further Than the Surface
Youth Voice Writing Contest essay finalist "Z" writes about the ineffectiveness of the foster care system, from its origin to the present.
A World Without Foster Care
Youth Voice Writing Contest poetry finalist Tasha Matthews writes about what a world without the foster care system would look like.
The Impact of Being Separated from my Family
Youth Voice Writing Contest essay finalist Esther Taylor writes about how the separation from her mother before her death affected her.
My Prison Experience
Youth Voice Writing Contest poetry finalist Qualyn Wilson writes about the connection between the foster care system and prison.