Centering lived experience in the national conversation.

A fundamental part of reforming child welfare is shifting the mental models we each carry with us, the ideas and expectations that shape what we consider important, accept as normal, and believe to be possible. The current and former foster youth we work with have big dreams, bold ideas, and an urgent desire to improve the system to help others like themselves. We work to amplify their voices and share this urgency with leaders and change makers across the country.

December 10, 2022

Changing the Conversation

Sean Harding

We’re shifting mental models about what’s working and what’s possible in child welfare.

December 20, 2022

A Close Look at the AFCARS Report

Steven Olender

This week, Think of Us is looking closely at the data in the newly released AFCARS Report #29, which reflects data on children in care in Federal Fiscal Year 2021 (October 1, 2020 to September 30, 2021). 

December 15, 2022

Away From Home Study Shifts National Conversation

Sonali Patel, MBA, MSW

Our report accelerates momentum for the national movement to end the need for group home placements for foster youth

Centre for Lived Experience
September 9, 2022

Trauma Responsiveness in Participatory Research

Sarah Fathallah

Research can be a site of harm and trauma for both participants and researchers. How can we be trauma-responsive in our research practices?

Centre for Lived Experience
July 17, 2022

From Foster Care to Founder - Tanya talks to Sixto Cancel

Tanya Acker

Tanya talks to the CEO and Founder of Think of Us about his personal journey through foster care; redesigning the foster care system; and healing childhood wounds through “radical service.”

Centre for Lived Experience
September 1, 2022

Fostering Hope, Driving Change - Think of Us & Sixto Cancel

Jena Lynch

Using technology to forge critical human connections may seem counter-intuitive, but the innovative and life-changing work Think of Us is driving in the US foster care system is doing exactly that!

Policy & Practice
July 8, 2022

Learning From Lived Experiences: Sixto Cancel

Texas CASA

Policy & Practice
May 31, 2022

Juvenile Law Center presents a conversation with Sixto Cancel and Dorothy Roberts

Juvenile Law Center

December 30, 2021

PBS News Hour - One former foster child's simple approach to fixing a broken system

PBS News Hour

October 17, 2022

Sixto Cancel, CEO & Founder,Think of Us | 2022 Concordia Annual Summit

2022 Concordia Annual Summit

Remarks: Sixto Cancel, CEO & Founder,Think of Us | 2022 Concordia Annual Summit

August 16, 2022

Think of Us Names Former Senior Federal Official as New Vice President of Strategic Project

We have exciting news to Share! Sonali Patel, has joined the leadership bench at Think Of Us as the new Vice President of Strategic Projects.

Centre for Lived Experience
June 2, 2022

Our Lived Experience Network in Action

Jen Zug

The Think of Us Lived Experience Network helped inform USA Today articles on failed adoptions.

January 14, 2022

Care Not Cages: Invest in Families and Communities

Bobbi Taylor

The Problem of Institutionalizing Youth is Bigger than Foster Care

January 14, 2022

We Did the Impossible: the Check for Us Initiative

Natalie Bergstrasser

How Think of Us demonstrated a new approach to streamlining government support.

November 23, 2021

COVID Relief for Thousands of Foster Youth Has Expired. Will Lawmakers Renew It?

Natalie Bergstrasser

The continuing conversation around how to support foster youth through the pandemic.

Policy & Practice
November 22, 2021

It’s Time for Our Wake Up Call: We Need Youth-Driven Care in the Child Welfare System

Mark Nickell, Guest Author

We have a responsibility to listen to youth, hear their voices and help them make their voices heard.

November 2, 2021

An Evening of Lived Experience on the Harms of Institutionalizing Youth.

Sarah Sullivan

Think of Us, Paris Hilton, and Breaking Code Silence hosted an event featuring leaders of different movements that share a common goal: ending unnecessary youth institutionalization.

Policy & Practice
October 18, 2021

Foster Youth Need Love and Support, Not Institutionalization.

Guest Author Jacqueline McKnight

When I first read the Away From Home report, I felt my current mission with North Carolina’s youth take on new dimensions; I felt my sense of urgency be redefined.

Policy & Practice
September 1, 2021

Healing, Preparing, and Supporting Youth in Foster Care.

Sarah Sullivan

Aged Out Report - Across the country, far too many young people age out of foster care into appalling circumstances.

August 27, 2021

Focus Must Stay On The Child When Providing Care.

Guest Author, Vannessa Dorantes

The goal for children who need therapeutic care should be to support them through timely permanency in foster care or kinship placements...

July 21, 2021

We See You, We Hear You, And Your Feelings Are Valid.

Sixto Cancel

Think Of Us launches 'Away From Home Youth Experiences of Institutional Placements in Foster Care'