Foster Guardian Extraordinaire: 400 Kids, One Woman, and a Smartphone App

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In a quaint office, a vintage-styled white desk boasts a collection of pens, notebooks, and paperwork. The scene is made poignant by an adjacent wall plastered with a vivid collection of finger paintings. These artworks are not just child’s play; they represent the hopes and dreams of 400 foster children. The orchestrator of this powerful space, Sherie Keegan, has committed herself for nearly a decade to guiding these souls through the foster system. Conspicuously absent from her modest corner is a computer. Even though there’s one elsewhere in her office, Sherie doesn’t need it. Sherie’s mainstay, her anchor, is a seemingly modest smartphone app: CamScanner.

The U.S. foster care system provides a sanctuary for children facing threats or neglect at home. Such circumstances may arise from issues like parental drug abuse. Children are placed with foster families for durations that can vary widely; Sherie once cared for a child for over two years. These children remain in foster care until their biological families are deemed safe again or alternative permanent arrangements, such as adoption, are made.

Regrettably, this refuge is struggling. A concerning decline in foster homes has been reported across multiple states. Factors like the startling rate at which new foster parents leave and the persistent underfunding of child welfare programs only exacerbate the challenges faced by these vulnerable children.

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Sherie Keegan with her family

A decade ago, Sherie Keegan stepped into the formidable role of foster guardian. Since then, she has become a lifeline for over 400 children navigating the foster care system. A mountain of documents accompanies each child: health records, school reports, personal details, and more. These essential documents need scanning, storing, sharing, and sometimes printing – a logistical challenge in its own right.

But for Sherie, the solution is simple. “CamScanner is my knowledge base,” she says, trusting the app to securely house essential records amidst her demanding responsibilities. It enables her to manage everything, from health certificates to transfer applications, even in the whirlwind that often precedes a new child’s arrival. This app’s efficiency doesn’t just make her job easier, but it ensures she can center her attention on her primary mission: supporting and nurturing the children under her care.

“I am a person who relies on habits,” Sherie reflects. “If I am familiar with a method, I will always use it.” It was the pressing urgency of incoming children and that search for a simplified workflow that led her to CamScanner 7 years ago.

CamScanner, in Sherie’s hands, becomes an indispensable organizational tool. With it, she manages records ranging from transfer applications to health certificates. Sherie reveals the often chaotic backdrop of her workflow: “Often when I receive documents, it is when the children are about to arrive. I need to do a lot of preparatory work, such as preparing beds and clothes for them, familiarizing myself with their information and personalities, and ensuring that they are comfortable after arrival.” For Sherie, the app isn’t just about convenience; it’s about ensuring she can focus on what truly matters: preparing for and nurturing her children. For Sherie, the seamless organization that CamScanner offers has also fostered clear lines of communication with caseworkers, ensuring that all protocols are met promptly.

Sherie’s unwavering commitment to her foster children drives her to utilize every resource available. Frugal out of necessity, Sherie often finds herself at the local library to save on the steep costs of toner from using her own office printer. Her adaptive strategies, whether it’s her familiarity with CamScanner or her trips to the library, emphasize her drive to ensure the well-being of her children within her means.

Sherie Keegan’s journey epitomizes the grassroots spirit and inherent resourcefulness of many in this nation. In a landscape dominated by red tape and scarce resources, Sherie’s tale illuminates how determination, paired with the right tools, can make a profound difference.

Sherie is candid about her priorities, noting, ‘I prefer to spend all my time with my children.’ Despite the constant challenges that come with foster guardianship, Sherie’s resourcefulness and dedication to what matters most rings true through her words.

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