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People Matter

Children’s Book Inspires Kids in Foster Care to Find Their Hero

JamieDr. Jamie Schwandt was born in a small town in Kansas. His parents abused drugs and alcohol, battled depression and suffered from other mental health issues. He was in and out of the foster care system, moving several times with his parents, grandparents and foster families. He witnessed his parents make many poor and dangerous decisions, and when Dr. Schwandt was 18-years-old, his father committed suicide.

Even though he endured a difficult childhood, Dr. Schwandt found many positive role models in his community that encouraged him to become a successful adult. Dr. Schwandt enlisted in the United States Army Reserve and obtained a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science from Fort Hays State University. He also completed a Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) from Kansas State University.

In 2014, Dr. Schwandt published his first book Succeeding as a Foster Child: A Roadmap to Overcoming Obstacles and Achieving Success, which focuses on the power of the individual to make a difference in their own future. Now, he’s doing something different in his second book Finding Your Hero, a children’s book about succeeding as a child in foster care. The story follows a young boy named Jamie who is neglected by his biological family and begins his journey into foster care. Along the way, Jamie discovers people in his community – foster parents, teachers, coaches and social workers – who become his mentors… his heroes.

Watch this video from the Finding Your Hero Kickstarter page: 

“We all possess the same ability to either succeed or fail. Being a foster child and failure are not synonymous. Dream big, think positive, and take action.” -Dr. Jamie Schwandt

Finding Your Hero is available for pre-sale on Kickstarter and will be distributed through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Kastle Books, the local publisher.

If you would like to be a hero for a child or youth in foster care, consider becoming a foster parent, joining our Everyday Hero monthly giving program, mentoring a teen, volunteering or donating.

Dr. Schwandt currently resides in Washington, D.C. with his wife and family. He is a commissioned officer in the United States Army Reserve, and has shared his research and personal story with many organizations and audiences.