foster care alumni change the narrative
It all started when…
In 2014 co-founders Vanessa Morrison and Bruce Waight started planning to address the obstacles and barriers that many youth of color face when it comes to their ethnic hair and skin care needs in foster and adoptive care. After years of volunteering, planning, and advocating on behalf of these issues, in 2016 they launched Cut it Forward and began the work. Brondalyn Coleman joined their efforts in 2018 and together they launched as a 501 (c)3 to address these culturally specific, underserved needs as a formal organization.
Morrison and Coleman know the need all too well after growing up and aging out of the foster care system. They began advocating on behalf of ethnic hair and skin care needs while they were still youth in foster care by speaking on panels, at conferences, and events beginning at the young age of 16.
“Youth of color oftentimes enter foster and adoptive systems with their culturally specific, hair and skin care needs going unmet.” Morrison explained. “This isolating gap can be detrimental to a youth’s self-image, confidence, a barrier in cultural bonding, and more.” Morrison stated.
With an intention to create accessible, consistent, reliable resources led and informed by the very community with the lived experiences, Cut it Forward has become a resource to families not only in Oklahoma but both nationally and internationally.
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