H.O.W. Humanity One World - How One Foster Care Woman Changed the Lives of 90 Teens
This Foster Mom Rocks!
Claudia Asprer is a mom who truly rocks! This Novato, California foster mom started taking in struggling teenagers when she was newly married and in her twenties. Since 1999, Claudia and her husband Roy have invited 90 foster children into their loving home.
I first heard about Claudia Asprer when watching The Queen Latifah show. Queen Latifah, herself, is an amazing woman. The show is entertaining, to say the least, but what draws me to the show each day is the segment where Queen Latifah introduces the world to unknown heroes – people who are making a difference in the lives of others. Through Queen Latifah I am seeing that there are many people out there helping people in unusual, but spectacular ways.
Jefferson Award Winner
In 2012, Claudia Asprer won the Jefferson Award.
The November 5 show featured a woman named Claudia Asprer, a woman who opened her home to teens who were struggling in school and in life. Claudia and her husband took these teens in one by one and showed each teen how to believe in themselves the way Claudia and her husband believe in them. Claudia took teens that were failing in school and worked with them to help them bring their grades up. One teen who came into the home was failing with a grade point average of 0.00 at the end of her freshman year. But by the time the teen graduated, she received honors for her scholarly achievements.
Teaching Not Preaching
Claudia spends a lot of time with her children. She doesn’t just tell them to study hard; she works directly with them, showing them exactly what to do.
Claudia and her husband Roy run a tight ship. They are strict with discipline, yet generous with love, and that is what makes the difference. In fact, one of the first teens to enter the Asprer household at the age of 19 is Marjorie Delgadillo. Delgadillo says the Asprers offer, “An abundant amount of endless love.”
You have to walk with them.— Claudia Asprer
After Leaving the Foster Home
At some point, the teens must leave the foster home system to continue on with adult life. Understanding the importance of education, Claudia rented a townhouse nearby so that the teens would have a place to stay while attending college. The house is operated under Claudia’s non-profit program called “Moving on Up”. While in the Moving on Up program, teens are expected to do well. They must do their homework, they have household chores, and they have a curfew. There are no excuses. Claudia and husband Roy have expectations that the teens do well.
All of the teens who have lived in the loving home provided by Roy and Claudia Asprer have grown up to be successful adults. They all attend college. Some attend out of state and some attend near home. Either way, they all consider their home to be the Asprer household.
The Reunion - Foster Parents and Teens Unite
On November 5, 2013, Queen Latifah gave Claudia a wonderful surprise. Many of the teens were flown in to be reunited with their mom, Claudia. Tears of joy flooded Claudia’s eyes when she saw her girls, some of whom she had not seen in years, walking onto the stage with big smiles and big hugs. In watching the reunion, I could feel the love and devotion this family has for each other. While Claudia and Roy have biological children of their own, their foster children were treated with the same kind of love, honor, and caring that is expected of a parent.
The Moving on Up Program
Statistics show that many emancipated foster youth don’t do well once leaving the foster care system. Claudia Asprer started the Moving on Up program to help teens make the transition to adult life a successful endeavor. This compelling video has some alarming statistics about the failures of teens who exit the foster care system without help. Having a program like Moving on Up gives hope, resources, and support to get them off to a good start into adulthood.
Video: Moving On Up
Yes! You Can Make a Difference.
Anyone with a heart can make a difference. Claudia opened her heart to one person and that eventually lead to her saving 90 teens from despair. No matter what you do, big or small, it can be the one thing that changes the outcome of someone’s life.
H.O.W. How Humanity One World
© 2013 Marlene Bertrand