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Opinion: Mentors can help those aging out of foster care
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The Hall County Division of Family and Children Services. - photo by Scott Rogers

I enjoyed the guest column, “Aging out of the foster care system …,” by Richard L. Jackson. This is indeed a national crisis that few people are aware of. 

Organizations such as Lawrenceville-based Connections Homes are doing an amazing job connecting young adults, most of whom have aged out of the foster care system, with “forever families” who step in to provide the guidance, loving support and sense of belonging that these young people have been lacking. 

The relationship is defined by the mentee and the mentor applicants that are matched up by the organization. Mentors are not necessarily tasked with housing and assuming financial support for the young adult or older teenager that they connect with — it’s more about being willing to accept them as family. 

Connections Homes and similar organizations offer guidance and encouragement to enable ordinary people to do this extraordinary thing that can be life-changing for these young people. I hope readers will consider being a mentor or supporting this type of organization.

Charles Santa Maria

Flowery Branch