Who’s Eligible

Youth ages 18-26 with experience in the foster care or juvenile justice systems, located anywhere in the United States. You may only enter the contest once.


Please submit a 1,000 – 2,000 word essay on this topic: What does family mean to you?

Your submission must include the following:

  • A title for your essay
  • A short written statement about you (100-300 words)
  • Your name, age and the state (and city or county) where you were in foster care and/or involved with juvenile justice
  • Your email address and phone number

Deadline – EXTENDED!!

Submit by 11:59 p.m. on April 5, 2020.


Winners will have the opportunity to have their essays published in The Imprint as well as our print magazine, Fostering Families Today.

The grand prize winner will receive $250 cash, one runner up will get $100 cash, and 3 finalists will each receive a $50 gift card.

Winners will be announced by the end of April 2020.


By submitting your essay, you grant Fostering Media Connections permission to publish your work as it chooses, indefinitely. All submissions will be blinded, meaning judges will not have any identifying information about the photographer. Winners will be asked to submit a short bio and headshot and to work with our editors to prepare their photos for publication.

How to Submit

Click here!!


Email us at youthvoice@fosteringmediaconnections.org or call us at (213) 265-7767 between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. PST, Monday through Friday.

Good luck!