At the time his CASA met him in May of 2017, Jimmy was a 12-year old boy who had been in a residential treatment facility since 2015 and involved in the child welfare system since the age of 3. Jimmy had experienced domestic violence and physical abuse with his family of origin. The parental rights for Jimmy’s parents were terminated.Jimmy experienced 18 different placements through DCF between 2006 and 2018.
As a result of his experiences, Jimmy exhibited aggressive behaviors and difficulty attaching with others. His behaviors were not improving, according to his clinicians, at least in part because of a lack of visitors and hope for moving forward and finding permanency. In short, Jimmy was “stuck.”
His CASA Franny entered his life and began taking him for walks with her dog and just connecting with Jimmy in a non-clinical, non-threatening way. Over time, Franny and Jimmy began taking trips into the community and Franny began to understand Jimmy and his challenges very well. Franny understood what Jimmy struggled with and worked to support him in any way she could.
Franny’s role with Jimmy came to the attention of her classmate, Andy, when Franny was reaching out to resources on Jimmy’s behalf. Andy expressed interest in meeting Jimmy and potentially fostering him. Andy is the adoptive father of two other boys whose situations are similar to Jimmy’s so he understood the needs and difficulties of an adolescent with Jimmy’s trauma history. In the spring of 2018, Jimmy met his two new dads, two new brothers and two new pet dogs.
Jimmy moved into his new home in August 2018 and has successfully transitioned to his new family. Adoption proceedings have begun and this new, happy family should be formally approved in the near future!