Loni Nannini Special at the Arizona Daily Star
In 2014, Jerrad Trotter started a non-profit organization on the premise that she had never met a foreigner.
âThe idea behind Strangers We Know is that we are all connected. We know each other on some level through our individual experiences. We’ve all cried, laughed, loved and hurt, and we want to build on those shared experiences, âsaid Trotter, who at the time was a case assistant for Arizona Child Protective Services and recognized a lack of resources for young people as they aged out of the system.
The organization seeks to build on human connections and fill this gap, which Trotter has seen contribute to homelessness, poverty, incarceration, teenage pregnancy and other social issues. .
âChildren are legally adults at 18, but to me they’re still babies. Many of them may become jaded and no longer want to be involved in the state system, but the caveat is that if there is help for them, they have to stay in the system to have resources available â , said Trotter.
As an antidote, Strangers We Know offers a variety of programs, including BRIDGES (Building Resourceful Individuals Destined for Greatness by Establishing Support), which provides support to young adults as they transition out of the foster care system. BRIDGES offers real-time assistance in the form of in-home starter kits filled with towels, sheets, blankets, shower curtains, pots, pans and other household items.