June 05, 2014

Pleasant-Sloan recounts foster care in Congress

Yemisi Pleasant-Sloan, a child care assistant with Rainbow’s End Child Development Center, recently participated in the Congressional Shadow Day for Foster Youth in Washington D.C. 

Pleasant-Sloan, a 2012 SIU early childhood education graduate, was one of 67 people chosen from about 400 applicants to participate.  The group of young people, all of whom have been in foster care, spoke to members of Congress during their visit, May 27-29. 

They shared their foster care experiences with members of the Congressional Caucus on Foster Care to assist lawmakers in writing foster care policies and laws. While on Capitol Hill, Pleasant-Sloan and the other participants took part in events including administrative meetings and caucus hearings, and received a hands-on education about the way the federal government operates.  

Pleasant-Sloan, a Chicago native, spent 19 years in foster care and said the congressional shadow experience was educational.  She has spoken with other college students and graduates and found they share similar experiences.  She hopes to translate her experience and what she’s learned into helping young people in foster care make a smooth transition to college and then independent adult living.