letter from the editor

I hope you will join me in honoring April as National Child Abuse Prevention Month. Although it is critical to promote awareness of abuse and neglect year-round, this month gives communities across the country an opportunity to share their best strategies to ensure that children are protected from harm, and to help that five year-old child who doesn’t yet know she will enter the foster care system!

I also want to celebrate the tremendous efforts of the entire Mockingbird staff! In the past month we have accomplished a lot across all of our programs.

I am excited to report that The Mockingbird Family Model (MFM) delivered an intensive, five-day training session for consultants representing The Fostering Network, an organization based in the United Kingdom. Their team will now lead the implementation of 21 MFM Constellations in England that will serve about 375 children and youth in care, as well as 210 foster care providers! This will also impact up to 6,600 more young people in care as the MFM is replicated across the UK. To learn more about the innovative MFM model, please visit our website: www. mockingbirdsociety.org.

I am excited to report that the Mockingbird Family Model (MFM) delivered an intensive, five-day training session for consultants representing The Fostering Network, an organization based in the United Kingdom.

Also in March, the Youth Advocates Ending Homelessness (YAEH) program advocated for new programs to be included in King County’s Comprehensive Plan to Prevent and End Youth and Young Adult Homelessness by 2020! At a community conversation on March 12, YAEH participants shared their insightful ideas about Host Homes and Rapid Supportive Housing models with a large group of policymakers, community leaders, and stakeholders. I hope you will read more about their system reform process and proposals in this edition of the Times.

We continue to make great progress in the state legislative session! We have now passed the half-way mark, and I’m happy to report that our two top priorities — Extended Foster Care (EFC) and the Homeless Youth Act (HY Act) — are moving forward. Both the House and Senate bills for EFC and the HY Act passed out of their houses of origin with strong bipartisan support, and they are now moving through the appropriate committees in the opposite chambers. We couldn’t have gotten this far without your support! Please be sure to visit our website to sign up for action alerts so we can notify you if we need urgent advocacy help as the session continues!

Finally, I want to thank our Board of Directors and our staff for working together closely to find Mockingbird’s next leader. I am so pleased with their dedication to ensuring our organization will continue improving foster care and ending youth homelessness after my transition at the end of May.

I remain mission-driven and laser-focused on our priorities, and I appreciate all that you do to join me in this effort.


jim signature

Jim Theofelis
Executive Director


Join Us for a Salute to Jim Theofelis

Thursday, May 14, 2015 6:30 p.m.

Town Hall Seattle
1119 - 8th Avenue
Seattle, Washington

There is no cost to attend.

logoPlease join us for a special evening to honor Jim Theofelis for 15 years of visionary leadership as founding Executive Director of The Mockingbird Society, and for his unparalleled commitment to advocacy and elevating the voice of youth and families impacted by foster care and homelessness.

Our Board of Directors and staff look forward to joining you in celebrating and honoring the lasting legacy Jim has created for our community, and to wish him well as he explores new horizons. All are welcome!

Register at www.mockingbirdsociety.org.

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We Welcome
Your Work

We welcome submissions of articles, poetry, artwork, and photography from our young readers who have experience in the foster care system and/ or homelessness. If you want to be, or have been, published in the Mockingbird Times visit www.mockingbirdsociety.org, call us at (206) 407-2134 or email us at youthprograms@ mockingbirdsociety.org. Note: Incoming letters to the editor and correspondence to youth under 18 years should be addressed to the Mockingbird Times and will be opened first by adult editorial staff.