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Our youth are the future - Meet Christina

I’ve been involved with CAS for a long time. When I was 15, my older sister, who was 19, became a foster parent to myself and my 13 year old brother. It is only now that I am turning 19 that I am starting to realize just how amazing and extremely challenging that must have been for her. She took care of us, went to University and worked three jobs. I can’t imagine how quickly she had to grow up. She is a survivor and I am forever grateful for the sacrifices she made. She is truly my inspiration and who I am today is largely owed to her.
 
Through my experiences in care, I have learned the importance of education and am pursuing a post secondary education. Receiving a bursary, or any form of financial aid, is critical to the progress and educational future of youth like me. My peers have parents and families who can financially support them and many youth in care don’t really have this same type of support. I’ve learned important skills to become financially independent, however it is hard to focus on your education if you are constantly worried about money. A lot of this pressure is relieved when you receive a bursary.
 
I hope the donors who support the Foundation know that no matter how big or small, their contributions do wonders. This help is never taken for granted. Youth in care are passionate, resilient, smart and ready to do big things. You never know where we may end up. Your donations are a huge resource for us.
 
I have always wanted to pursue a career where I can help others. I used to think working as a lawyer or within policy was the way to go, but I am discovering that there are some amazing things that can be done with technology as well. I’m in the process of learning to code and even though I just finished my first year at University of Toronto I am going to go to summer school to study computer science.
 
I would like to tell all youth involved with children’s aid to never stop dreaming. Find what makes you happy and believe that you have the power to achieve your goals. Everyone has different challenges and a different story to tell. I hope that by sharing mine I can inspire others.
 
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Helping all youth leaving care to achieve success is a priority for Peel CAS. Peel Children’s Aid’s youth strategy focuses on education and employment. Youth are encouraged to stay in school and are eligible to apply for bursaries to pursue post secondary education. 
 
Did you know?
 
* In 2016/17 55 youth received bursaries totalling $202,000! A big thank you to our donors.
 
* May 14 is Children and Youth in Care Day! This day acknowledges the enormous contributions current and former Crown and Society wards make to the Province, as well as the strength, bravery and resilience shown by these children and youth in the face of adversity.