A story about love and dedication in the face of adversity…

  

The Shaniya Rose Community Development Inc. began its journey decades ago In February of 1976 when my life first began. I was born to a teenage mother who had already experienced some of the inconsistencies and struggles often accompanied by the foster care system. A ward of the state herself, I was eventually removed from her care and placed in the system myself. I was fostered by the Lowe family and fortunately became a forever member of their family. My mother Valerie Lowe had a passion for children and family, and dedicated motherhood to children in foster programs. She and her husband, my father L.C. Lowe, opened their home to my little brother, and several other foster children throughout the years.

I only learned of my own adoption when I was ten years old, although my ten year old conceptions of what adopted children were did not seem to fit with my loving and supportive upbringing. I was a grown woman and mother of my own when I finally learned the whole truth about my biological family, and the circumstances under which my birth mother birthed me. My birth mother separated from my birth father who according to my adoption files had minimal involvement in my life. My birth mother had other children after me, and I learned that she struggled throughout her young adulthood in abusive relationships, and emotional issues. She found herself living in Northern California in the mid-eighties after having her last child, a little brother whom I still have never met. As I was settling into life with a loving family, my birth siblings were being separated from their mother forever. My birth mother met an unfortunate demise at the hands of infamous serial killers Charles Ng and Leonard Lake. Her remains were scattered among many other people who detectives struggled to identify, yet investigators were able to recover and keep a long personal letter she wrote in attempts of leaving behind a legacy of love for me and my birth siblings.

Her tenacity for love for me even in the face of her own death, and in the loving memory of my mother Valerie Lowe who has since passed from cancer, I started this non profit organization to bridge the  financial gaps  and everyday struggles of the system to help eliminate the unfortunate traditions of abuse, separation, and abandonment that foster children often feel.  Shaniya Rose, the organizations name-sake is my niece who was born into the system. As I naturally became an advocate for her to have the best care and opportunities that I was fortunate to have, I became increasingly aware of the issues my mother Valerie Jane had the passion to help me avoid. With the spirit of both my mothers ever-present, and motivation for Shaniya as she grows up, I am fiercely dedicated to give children like I was, and like Shaniya the loving support that they deserve in order to move forward with a happy, successful and healthy lifestyle!


image130