Fatu’s Story

At 19, Fatu’s future looks bright. She plans to go to Monroe College in the fall to follow her dream of becoming a lawyer. She’s currently going to school and working full-time as a paralegal at Queens Defenders, which provides free services to low-income people. Not long ago, she was a recipient of those services.

You see, the future did not always look so bright for Fatu. When she came to live in one of SCO’s residences for youth in foster care in 2018, she had had a difficult childhood, and she’d been in trouble with the law.

When Fatu was 12, her mother returned to their native Liberia with her younger brother, leaving Fatu with an abusive family friend in Queens. She eventually ran away, joined a gang and got into trouble.

When she first came to SCO, Fatu was confrontational with staff and other residents. But despite her rocky start at her new home, SCO staff has been behind her since day one. They encouraged her to further her education and pursue her GED. They showed her the right way to do things, and most of all, they showed her they cared.

Fatu’s former Queens Defenders lawyer, Anthony Martone, played a pivotal role in her turnaround. He saw her potential and went the extra mile to help her by initiating an internship program at the firm for past clients who’ve been through the juvenile justice system. Fatu was the first intern and became the first full-time hire from the program.

Fatu is positive, respectful, and focused. She loves her job and it has inspired her to pursue a degree in Criminal Justice.

Her turnaround has been nothing short of miraculous, and it serves as an inspiration to other youth. Fatu is living proof of what is possible with a positive attitude, hard work, perseverance, and the help of caring adults who never stop believing in you.

See Fatu’s story in THE CITY.

(Photo: Ben Fractenberg-THE CITY)

Jasmine’s Story

I entered foster care at 16 years old and was placed in the home of “Aunt” Nessa, as I liked to call her. Few people knew of my situation; it was our little secret. I was embarrassed by the family dysfunction that led me to this strange place in my life, and with the support of my SCO caseworkers, I realized that education was my way out.

My goal was to attend Spelman College. I faced some naysayers; guidance counselors who said it was too expensive, others who felt I would never get in. But my SCO caseworkers and staff supported my decision. They stayed on top of me, making sure I filled out every document and scholarship. It was the staff’s unwavering support and positive reinforcement that sustained me.

I was accepted to Spelman with scholarships from several organizations as well as financial support from SCO’s education and permanency program, which helped me afford my housing.

But that was just the start of my journey. During summer break, I earned an internship volunteering with foster youth and their families through AmeriCorps that changed my life. I didn’t want any special treatment, so no one at my job was aware of my status as a foster youth. But as I worked in the family visiting room, much like a fly on the wall, I watched young people about my age visiting with the children they had lost custody of, some pregnant again. I saw a vicious cycle happening before my eyes.

It was that summer I realized that as a woman of color, as a foster youth, and as a human being who just cares, it would be a disservice if I didn’t take advantage of my unique pairing of lived experiences and desire to affect change.

Today, I am at Teachers College Columbia University earning my Masters in Clinical Psychology on a full scholarship, so that I, too, can be a source of support for youth in need.

Click here for IMPORTANT COVID-19 UPDATES from SCO

Careers

A world of opportunity awaits at SCO. Each and every day, SCO’s dedicated employees touch the lives of thousands of New Yorkers – providing them with the tools needed to build better and brighter lives. Join us!

Working at SCO
Search our Jobs
Professional Development


WARNING! Beware of Fake SCO Family of Services Job Posts!

SCO has no job postings on Craigslist and will only communicate through its SCO.org web and email domains. SCO does not conduct interviews by email or Google HangOuts, and is not expanding its service area.  Please DO NOT disclose your personal information, including social security and bank account information. You may report a suspicious SCO job posting, by emailing us at RecruitmentRequests@sco.org with “Craigslist” or “Suspicious Job Posting” in the subject line.


Join our team of professionals! 

Visit our Careers Portal to create a profile and apply online.

Current SCO Employees – login to the Employee Portal.

You will need to enter your agency-provided User Name and Password. If you encounter an issue logging on, please contact the IT Help Desk at 516.656.0300, or email HelpDesk@sco.org.

SCO Family of Services is an Equal Opportunity Employer M/F/D/V

About SCO Family of Services
SCO Family of Services is an equal opportunity employer.  Our agency emphasizes and promotes diversity as we believe that having a diverse staff/workforce is essential to fostering a more innovative, creative, and productive environment.  We strongly encourage applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, creed, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability, socio-economic status, life experiences or military/veteran status.  All qualified candidates will have a strong sensitivity to and appreciation of differences among staff and clients within our organization.


 

SCO Employees: visit the SCO Intranet for the latest news.

Fatu’s Story

Changing Her Trajectory

At 19, Fatu’s future looks bright. She plans to go to Monroe College in the fall to follow her dream of becoming a lawyer. Learn More

Jasmine’s Story

From Foster Care to Advocate

Today, I am at Teachers College Columbia University earning my Masters in Clinical Psychology on a full scholarship, so that I, too, can be a source of support for youth in need. Learn More

100%

of eligible residents at our Madonna Heights Residential Treatment Facility participated in work, internship, or volunteer activities

87%

of young adults in foster care (18+) are enrolled in school or working

Stay in the loop

Subscribe to the SCO Newsletter to hear the latest on SCO’s programs, people, and happenings.