One Woman’s Journey from Foster Care to Fostering

By Jesse Colman, Public Relations Specialist

Elizabeth Troudt is no stranger to adversity. At a young age, family tragedy led her into the state’s foster care system. Her experience was far from kind and lacked the nurturing environment to steward a recovery from the traumas of her past. She turned to drugs and was eventually sentenced to serve three years inside a federal prison.

“In prison, I got clean and restarted my life,” Elizabeth said. “It took that experience to gain my true freedom.”

A few years later, she met her wife, Carrie. They clicked immediately and haven’t gone a day without talking since. Together, they raised a son who is now serving in the Navy.

Later on in her recovery, Elizabeth decided she wanted to volunteer with the recovery community to support others on that journey. It was through this work that Elizabeth and Carrie would go on to meet a young woman who would change their lives forever.

“We got a call, asking if Carrie and I could become advocates for DeAsia,” Elizabeth said. “Only a couple of days before, Carrie and I were talking about the possibility of fostering or adoption.”

Through the Colville tribe, they eventually brought her home and began their fostering journey. It wasn’t long after that they invited her brother De’Veion to join them. Each of them had their own unique challenges. It hasn’t always been easy, but they credit both of them with enriching their lives.

“People often tell us how lucky they are to have us. We always say that it’s the other way around,” Elizabeth said. “It’s hard. All kids want to be loved, and sometimes that love looks different than what they actually want it to do.”

COVID-19 has brought its own set of challenges for the whole family. Although Carrie is still able to work, Elizabeth’s job has been put on hold. De’Veion’s school assignments are all being done online, and he’s missing out on track season.

“Our computer was so old that it couldn’t even load some of his school work,” Carrie said. “Good thing Treehouse provided him with one that can actually load the pages.”

De’Veion meets weekly with Nina Moore, his Treehouse Graduation Success Coordinator. Together they work on setting goals and navigating high school. Like all of Treehouse’s programs, Graduation Success has had to adapt its services to meet the evolving needs of youth. Providing students with the technology they need to connect to their classroom and continue working on their goals is just one example.

“De’Veion has his own cheerleader,” Elizabeth said. “He knows he can go to Nina, no matter what his situation at home. That is so important for these kids to have.”

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About the Author

Jesse Colman was the Public Relations Specialist for Treehouse. He is passionate about building relationships, storytelling and community development.

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