Mockingbird Times January 2017



Power of One iconPower of One

Kesha Brandon

When you open a box of crayons, there will be some that are dull, broken, wrappers torn, and dirty mixed in amongst those that happen to still look sharp, like they haven’t been touched at all. When you look at it like this, it’s easy to see the “problem.” You might believe that it would be easier to

System reform iconSystem Reform

Tatyana Barron

Washington state has a foster care placement crisis, with nearly 9,000 youth in the system and only around 5,000 licensed foster homes, according to Treehouse. This is an issue that greatly affects the permanency, safety, support, and shelter of teens placed in the foster care system. When people think of adopting or fostering youth, they’re generally more inclined towards babies and young children. And who can blame them?

annie blackledgeDear Friends and Allies,

I find myself looking forward to 2017 with great excitement. Yes, 2016 was a tough year. We saw the number of youth who find themselves living on the streets or surfing from couch-to-couch rise to record levels. Children deemed victims of abuse and neglect found themselves spending their days in an office and nights in motel rooms instead of in loving foster homes...

Screen Shot 2017 08 22 at 10.52.24 AMYAEH

Eden Hottman-Nanceeden

As winter approaches, many of us look forward to holidays, vacations, time with family, and home-cooked meals. But for many, the season brings with it not warm thoughts of relaxation and holiday cheer, but the stark reality that winter is again upon us.

Power of One iconPower of One

Azia Ruff

If you keep up with the news, you might’ve noticed a trend emerging. From politics to sports, movies and music, things are being increasingly viewed through a racial lens. You might be asking why are we still talking about racism, despite it being more than fifty years since the end of the Civil Rights Movement and, more importantly, “what does this have to do with me?”

Power of One iconPower of One

Zack Zibrosky

Dear Zack in 2012 —Dear Zack in 2012 —

Yikes. The last two weeks have been terrible. Your mom died, your grandparents abandoned you and took your sister, and now you are going into foster care. You are alone, sad, mad, confused, infuriated, heartbroken, and feeling many other things. This day was terrible — one of the worst and there is nothing anyone could say to make it better. So how about a warning instead. The warning is: it might get worse. Foster care will be the hardest thing you will ever go through.

System reform iconSystem Reform

Carol Freemancarol

Remember when schools used to call a student’s parent if a child was being unruly instead of arresting them? In October 2015, a student in South Carolina was flipped out of her desk and tossed across her classroom before being arrested. What was she being arrested for? For being on her phone and not listening to administrators when they tried to confiscate the phone. In April 2016, a middle schooler in Texas was slammed to the ground before being arrested for arguing with another student. It seems as though more and more students are being arrested with criminal charges for typical kid behavior.

Art in Action iconArt in Action

Brianna Winslow 

Braving the Streets

My life consists of braving the streets,

The life of always taking a back seat.

No voice, no opinion, nothing seems to matter,

I’ve no physical strength to climb up the ladder.

2021 Archives

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, call us at (206) 407-2134 or email us at youthprograms@ 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.