1.00 CE Credits Available
Melissa: Teen Mother in Foster Care
by Calamari Productions
Watch the intense struggles of a fifteen-year-old girl living in a foster home with her medical needs infant as she learns how to care for her daughter and returns to school.
Children in the foster care system face a variety of challenges, but when a foster child also has a child of her own, the challenges are drastically multiplied. This video follows the day-to-day struggles of Melissa, a fifteen-year-old foster child with a seven-month old medical needs daughter, Raven.

Raven, who was born with 50% brain damage, has been placed in a foster home with Karen, a foster mother who specializes in raising medical needs children. Raven has showed tremendous progress while under Karen's care, but she still requires multiple medications several times a day and frequent medical attention. Melissa, who was on the run even while giving birth to Raven, was recently placed in Karen's foster home as well, so she is now able to be with her daughter.

Focusing on the acute needs of one foster family, this video answers many questions about the nature of foster care. Melissa's story not only represents the journey of a teenager through the foster care system, but also shows how the foster care system handles teen parents and their children. Through candid interviews and the involvement of a dedicated caseworker, this video presents a day in the life of a teen mom in foster care as she faces her tremendous new responsibilities, and demonstrates the various interventions necessary to help Melissa and her child.

In Depth
CE Test
If you want to increase your understanding of foster childrens’ experiences, this straightforward documentary is an excellent learning tool. This video can help demystify the most serious foster care cases so you will be more informed if working with clients in similar situations.

From watching this video, you will:
  • Learn about the experience of a teenage mother who is now in foster and the chaotic home life which led her to run away and land in the foster system.
  • Understand how foster system caseworkers conduct home visits as well as how cases involving medical needs infants are handled, and learn how about the high degree of care these children require.
  • Become more informed about severe foster care cases to enhance your practice when working with similar situations.

Length of video: 00:51:14

English subtitles available

Group ISBN-10 #: 1-60124-505-X

Group ISBN-13 #: 978-1-60124-505-2

Karen Furore Grau and Larry Grau officially launched Calamari Productions in 1995, after a decade of journalism and education policy experience. President and Executive Producer Karen Grau brings 25 years of broadcast experience to all Calamari projects. Her career also includes three years as Deputy Legislative Director to former Indiana Governor Evan Bayh, where her work included analyzing the content and fiscal impact of legislation drafted by state agencies under the jurisdiction of the Governor's office. Karen also assisted in writing three State of the State addresses. In 2014, Karen was named a Knight Foundation Fellow in Ethics at Washington & Lee University.

Larry Grau served as Senior Education Policy Executive to former Indiana Governor Frank O'Bannon, where he drafted and directed several major initiatives enacted into law, including creating a stakeholders' education roundtable, a statewide comprehensive education accountability system, establishing the state's first alternative education program, and creating Indiana's initial early education reading diagnostic policies and programs.
Calamari Productions remains the only production company in the United States with state Supreme Court access allowing documentary cameras inside child welfare juvenile courts, venues that are—by law—closed to the media and the public. Calamari has turned that trust and extraordinary camera access into unprecedented, award-winning documentary series and video content used around the globe, from television outlets and networks such as ABC, NBC, MSNBC, A&E, MTV, Dateline NBC, Hulu, Nightline, Good Morning America, 20/20, Court TV, PBS, Bio and Channel 4 (UK), to universities and state governments around the country. Calamari video content is used for education and training purposes in over 14 countries, 200 universities, 25 Policy and Advocacy organizations and 85 state government agencies and facilities.

Today, Karen and Larry continue to direct and manage the creative vision that has put the company on the cutting edge of news, documentary and digital content programming. In their spare time they can be found spending time with their adult children, volunteering with at-risk kids and rescuing stray animals when not behind a camera!   

CE credits: 1

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe the formative experiences of the depicted teenager mother
  • Discuss the elements child-centered home visits
  • Plan effective foster care-based interventions

Bibliography available upon request

This course is offered for ASWB ACE credit for social workers. See complete list of CE approvals here

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