How a former foster kid is paying it forward today

Shannon Majors has a pretty good understanding of the challenges and obstacles faced by kids living in foster care because she used to be one of those kids.

The Michigan native first became a foster child as a toddler, but then re-entered foster care as an 8-year-old. She has clearer memories of her second time in the system.

“It was tough being a foster kid. I was never a teen in the system, but those months when I was older, I remember it more and it was rough,” she said.

That’s why, since 2008, Shannon has chosen to spend some of her spare time as a volunteer in CASA’s Milton Foster Children’s Fund (MFCF) program.

MFCF exists to provide foster kids in the Pikes Peak Region with enrichment and educational opportunities to help them build the self-esteem and resilience needed to become healthy, contributing adults. The program does this in three ways: funding, teen life skills and events, and The Hanger which is a store in CASA’s office where teens can shop for free and gain work experience.

“I had to work really hard not to live that toxic life I was raised in. Not everybody is going to do that. I wanted to break the cycle though. You have to put support around these kids. I owe the changes in my life to all of the good people that were placed there along the way,” she said.

Now, Shannon is one of those good people placed in the lives of today’s kids who are engaged in their own fights to break a cycle.

As a MFCF volunteer, Shannon sits on the Allocation Committee which grants funding to foster youth to help them participate in activities like summer camp, music lessons, sports, tutoring, zoo trips, and more. Shannon also volunteers in The Hanger where she cleans and stocks the merchandise.

“Having a CASA would have really helped me in my scenario,” she said. “It gives me joy to support an organization that is giving kids an advocate for the situations they’re in.”