Former NY foster child gets back $400k in insurance money reported swinedled by foster parents

July 19, 2011 TAMPA, Fla. — A former New York foster child swindled out of more than $400,000 in insurance money by his foster parents recovered the money Tuesday, posing for photos alongside an oversized check from Florida authorities as if he had won the lottery.

For Markus Min Ho Kim, now 25 and working as a stage hand in New York City, some of the money may help further his education, possibly in music. The restitution comes more than a decade after authorities say his father killed his mother, landing Kim as a teenager in the New York state foster care system.

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Alexia Nechayev

FYS Events & Meeting Chair
(Palm Beach)

Hello, My name is Alexia Nechayev. I am 25 years old and I am an alumna of Florida International University where I received my B.A. in Psychology. My future career goal is to be a Lawyer. I was in care for about one year from age 17 to 18. Prior to entering care, I only knew about the negative stigma regarding foster care and while in care that narrative was unfortunately my experience.

In school I felt like I was on display because my status in care was broadcast to other students and in my placement behavior was leveraged for “privileges” that should be a natural right of all children. Because I did not know my rights I did not know that what I was experiencing was wrong. Today this is exactly why I advocate, because I don’t want this to be the same for other youth who are experiencing foster care.

This is my second year on the FYS Statewide Board and I’m happy to be the Events and Meetings Chair this year because my main goal through advocacy is to reach as many people as possible. My favorite thing as a board member is to see how comfortable members become while working together. The community needs to know that youth in foster care are real people, going through some of the hardest moments of their life and youth need to know that their voice is powerful. I believe that we have to speak up and bring these issues to people’s attention so that they do not forget us. Advocacy, education and consistency is the only way.

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