It has been brought to my attention recently that an amazing number of incarcerated and formerly incarcerated men and woman are products of the foster care system. An organization called Arrow Child and Family Ministries claims their research shows 80% of all incarcerated individuals were at some point in foster care and girls in foster care are 600% more likely to become pregnant before age 21.
I did see some slightly lower percentages in an NPR report and some other places but everywhere I looked in preparation for this week's interview had truly shocking numbers. I'm sure there are some very loving foster care environments that provide an atmosphere to flourish and grow in as well.
However, the assumption can be drawn that there are ex-offenders that have unresolved issues resulting from foster care. That brings me to this week's guest. Shenandoah Chefalo is one of a small percentage of foster care children that actually graduate from college and are able to have successful careers ( most estimates put that number around 3%). Shenandoah has overcome this issue and has written about it in a new book, Garbage Bag Suitcase. She has done her homework and has some thoughts for those of you that are ex-offenders and were foster children.