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ILSP: The Transition to Adulthood
Leonard Moncure and Jennifer

Leonard Moncure standing next to Jennifer
ILSP Social Worker Leonard Moncure, and ILSP Graduate Jennifer (right)

I never dreamed of going to college.

July-August 2001

by Richard Bermack

Jennifer was nine years old when she entered the foster care system and was placed in a group home, where she stayed until she emancipated at 18. Even though she lived in the same place, it was hard for her to connect with anyone there. “It was hard in the group home to get along with the kids and confide in people. There is a lot of office politics. You say something to someone and it spreads through the whole group home within a week. I had about six or seven workers, and I never could get a hold of them.

“ILSP made the difference. That is when I was able to connect up with someone. I was failing in high school and wasn’t going to graduate, but Mr. Moncure and the other workers explained that you need to graduate. That is the only way that you will get anywhere in life. I never, ever thought in my whole life that I was going to be going to college, because of the stereotype that foster kids aren’t going to make it anywhere, that we are just stupid. But they showed us all the success stories, people graduating from college with bachelors degrees and masters, and I looked at those people and thought, ‘I can definitely do this.’”

ILSP helped Jennifer with housing and computer skills, but most of all it provided support and encouragement. She is about to start college