Sarah Winograd’s journey as a “professional volunteer” led to the realization that poverty was a driving factor in the child removals in the families she was working with. See how Sarah mobilized her community to address family poverty to help families stay together. Through the Together for Families program, Sarah lives out her vision of supporting families by helping them meet basic needs.
00:00:30 | Matt opens this episode reflecting on the child welfare system’s association between poverty and neglect
00:01:10 | Meet Sarah Winograd: Program Manager for Together for Families, Advocates for Children, and an adoptive mom.
00:05:05 | Back in the U.S. as an adult, Sarah dedicated herself to volunteering where she would begin spending a lot of her time working with youth formerly in foster care in New York and later in Georgia.
00:06:45 | Sarah talks about the first case she worked on as a CASA volunteer in Georgia.
00:10:37 | Who was representing and supporting the mom in Sarah’s case?
00:11:28 | Sarah explains the “ah-ha” moment she experienced while talking to one of the children in the family. This helped her fill in gaps that were missing from the family’s case file.
00:15:20 | Matt and Sarah discuss a shift in thinking around the reason Sarah became a CASA volunteer—from helping kids to helping the whole family.
00:17:38 | Sarah explains some of the support she provided to the family while staying within the boundaries of her role as a CASA volunteer.
00:20:37 | Sarah shares how she received the reputation for the "resource queen” by helping families not on her case load meet their basic needs and stay in-tact.
00:22:59 | Sarah shares her findings on poverty as a driver of child welfare involvements, as well as how her colleagues felt about the realities of the families they served.
00:25:10 | Sarah talks about the conversation with her CASA supervisor.
00:30:54 | Matt reflects on the punitive structure of the child welfare system and Sarah’s approach to seeing families for their strengths and with empathy, rather than defining them by their circumstances.
00:32:14 | What’s next for Sarah after CASA?
00:41:14 | Sarah’s vision of what’s next for the Together for Families program.
00:44:40 | Advice for people seeing the same issues in their community who want to address the needs of families.
00:45:53 | Final thoughts from Matt Anderson.
Together for Families | Advocates for Children