Washington Heights

"There was a lot of violence." by richard ross

I’ve been here six months. I’m from Washington Heights. I’ve been in ACS since I was 12—four years now. My home is my mom and three siblings: my eight year-old sister, my seven year-old sister, my eighteen year-old brother, and my one month-old baby. It’s four all together. My mom is a home health aid. I don’t talk to my dad. There is no stepdad. No I don’t have kids. I was 12 years old when I was taken into foster care. There was a lot of confusion in my family. There was a lot of violence.

K., age 16

K., age 16

The first foster home was in the Bronx. I was there with a family. There were a lot of conflicts. They took all my siblings into foster care. No, my mom hasn’t had any mental health treatment. She did have anger management counseling though. My mom would cook at home. She would make Chicken Alfredo. I’m in ninth grade. I have been in 18 foster homes. There hasn’t been a lot of abuse, but lots of drama. Me and my sisters were split up after the 6th foster home. My sisters went back to my mother. I would like to be there, but me and my mother don’t get along.

— K., Age 16.