In the UK, a documentary was released this week discussing the foster care system in Wales and the use of temporary placements like hostels. In Texas, Beto O’Rourke has continued to point to the state’s child welfare system (as a part of his campaign) as something that needs to change to truly protect youth. All over the world, media, politicians, individuals and organizations are calling for change, for improvement to systems that are meant to help children but too often fall short.
Yet, it feels like these calls also fall short, never quite making it to the point of action. They reveal or remind us of what is wrong but don’t necessarily point to a solution or next step. We must remember that awareness can never be the end goal. It is the starting point.
For real change to be made, we must contact our legislators - state and national, work with community organizations to plan and implement meaningful programming, and continually look for (and act upon) ways to help.
Learning is crucial. But utilizing our knowledge is even more important.