Santa Clara County Celebrates 13th Annual Reunification Day

Friday, June 14, 2024, was a day full of excitement for foster youth and their families as Santa Clara County celebrated its 13th Annual National Reunification Day to acknowledge the unique efforts of our local families and communities toward reunifying families impacted by foster care.  

This day was organized by the County of Santa Clara Superior Court, Department of Family and Children’s Services (DFCS), Dependency Advocacy Center (DAC), Legal Advocates for Children and Youth, the Office of the County Counsel, Law Foundation of Silicon Valley, Office of the County Counsel Child Dependency Unit and Child Advocates of Silicon Valley to celebrate families who overcame immense challenges to reunify with their youth. During the celebration, five families, in particular, were honored for their determination and strength in achieving reunification with their children placed in foster care.

Judge Shawna Schwarz led the celebration introducing social workers, community partners and the families of foster youth who made reunification possible. After each family and their honoree were introduced, Child Advocates gifted baskets filled with toys for youth to take home. After all of the families had been presented and honored, the celebration concluded with mingling and snacks! 

When children are removed from their parents, all parties involved strive for one outcome, reunification. As such, this day was especially meaningful for two Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASAs) who were in attendance to celebrate the successful reunification of the children they served. CASA Kristin Jazdzewski supported two foster siblings by providing them with outdoor play in the park, assisting them with parental visits and always SHOWING UP for them when difficult situations arose. CASA Emily Renuart took their youth out to explore new activities and made it a point to help strengthen the youth’s social and emotional skills. The commitment of these two CASAs is a demonstration of the positive impact our volunteers have in the lives of foster youth.

If you too would like to have a positive impact on the lives of foster youth, consider attending one of our info sessions to learn more about how you can become a CASA or support our programs by investing in our foster youth with a financial contribution. Through community efforts we can continue LIFTING UP foster youth for moments like Reunification Day.