Terry Harrak

Consultant, Just Beginning

Terry Harrak, has more than a decade of youth advocacy, curriculum development, training and community outreach experience. She currently works on the Quality Parenting Initiative (QPI) and the Just Beginning Program (JB) at the Youth Law Center. Mrs. Harrak supports our organizational goals by ensuring young people have a voice in the QPI process. She works directly with QPI sites training youth and developing strategies for youth involvement. Mrs. Harrak manages Just Beginning Program sites nationally. Prior to her work at Youth Law Center, she served as Project Manager for Child Welfare League of America and Director of Youth Engagement for Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative. She has testified before congress and elsewhere on issues pertaining to youth services. Mrs. Harrak is the author of Guidelines for Development of Foster Care Handbooks: What Foster Youth Have to Say and co-creator of Strategic Sharing: a curriculum for youth public speaking. Mrs. Harrak created The National Foster Youth Advisory Board in 2000. The group was instrumental in the movement to increase foster youth participation in policy and advocacy. In addition to her professional experience Terry brings her personal experience with the foster care and juvenile justice systems to her work. Mrs. Harrak’s personal testimony was instrumental in the passing of the Foster Care Independence Act and John H. Chafee Independent Living Program. She was invited to speak at The White House alongside First Lady Hillary Clinton at the 1999 White House Summit on Foster Care. Mrs. Harrak resides in Northern Virginia with her husband. In her free time, she enjoys travelling and being an aunt. Her advocacy efforts are fueled by her dream that no child will ever experience a system and that every child will have the quality loving parenting they deserve.

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