You speak and we Listen. Real stories of why Ohana is needed!

No one knows the trails, trauma, loneliness and disappointments as well, as those that have experienced it. Our best leaders, Mentors and Developers for the young adults in the Ohana Project will be those that have overcome and advocate for change to the system that failed them. Today the major changes that are happening for the good of Adult Foster Youth, are because of Alumni that are speaking up and making change happen.


My name is Renee Washington and I joined The Ohana Project March or April of this year I believe. My counselor heard of them through another patient of hers and during our next session we called The Ohana Project together. We got on the phone and talked to Mark first I believe. They just straight up asked me what was going on and what I needed help with. I was in a really bad spot, very behind on bills and my car was messed up. Anway, we meet in person a few days later at a local restaurant and I could tell from the jump they were really nice people!! They explained what they do and how they weren’t case workers and they didn’t answer to any type of foster agency. It was nice fr. Being a part of the system since I was 5 and the injustices I faced, it was nice knowing that these people really wanted to help and it wasn’t just to collect a check. We got right down to it and my car was fixed within the next two months and all my bills were back on track. It was awesome fr. They really understand how foster youth after they emancipate are really just thrown to the curb. Well-Mark and Ashley are there too pick ya up!! I realized they really wanted what was best for me and they really just want to set you up for the future you want- no judgment. I can’t wait to update this testimony because they are still working with me and there’s so much more to accomplish!! Thank God for the Ohana Project!!


“Ohana really cares about the kids they take under their wing. You can tell they love us and they treat us as their own and as a emancipated foster kid that didn’t really have anyone, that makes a difference to us. Other agencies are in it for the money and don’t really care about the kids and they have favorites… everyone is treated equal in Ohana and everyone is a family <3 spoken from personal experience and wrote with love.”


I met the Ohana Project through a housing program I was involved in. They helped me get a good job, my license, my insurance, my first apartment, and a really nice car. They were there for me when I crashed my really nice car, due to their advice and good insurance I got another really nice car. When I talk to them, I like that there are no stupid questions. Whatever I ask, they explain. Also they are 7/24 when there is a need. My crash was late at night on a holiday, and they were right there for me. They treat me like family. 


“My name is Jonathan Thomas, and I am an emancipated foster youth who dedicates my time training others, and spreading awareness for the need for foster homes. During my childhood I endured many tough obstacles. Such obstacles often left me devoid of any self-worth. I became physically, emotionally, and mentally crippled by feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, and loneliness. These experiences were brought to an end when I entered the foster care system when I was 14 years old. Despite the foster care system being my knight, and shining armor, all was not perfect.”

We invite Former fosters to share their story and their successes.


The Ohana Project is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit located in Toledo, Ohio.