See You Now Podcast

105: Fostering Kids <> Fostering Families


Our kids are not okay. Social isolation, technology use, and mental health conditions like anxiety and depression are all spiking for children and teens. The US Surgeon General’s Advisory on Protecting Youth Mental Health conveys, “the challenges today’s generation of young people face are unprecedented and uniquely hard to navigate. And the effect these challenges have had on their mental health is devastating” and has an had outsized impact on youth in foster care. In the U.S. nearly half a million children are in foster care every year, many of whom experience trauma, instability, separation, loss, and neglect. As Foster Care Awareness and Mental Health Awareness both fall in May we’re amplifying their messages and learning how foster care and mental health are powerfully connected through the “Foster Care to PhD” lived and professional experiences of nurse practitioner and foster care survivor Sharrica Miller, PhD, RN.

In this episode, Sharrica offers an unvarnished account of the foster care experience; discusses how nurses can use their advocacy and clinical skills to collaborate with social services to protect and provide stability for children in foster care; and shares her research, mentoring, and advocacy for legislative and policy changes to improve the child welfare system, ensuring their health and well-being as they transition out of foster care.

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On a daily basis, we trust nurses with billions of dollars of equipment, critical procedures, and our most important assets: the people we love. But they’re doing so much more behind the scenes.
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Group of smiling nurses in scrubs holding folders
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