In the Connect Our Kids “Our Hero” series, we recognize the outstanding work of our users who have made a life-changing impact on the lives of children in foster care.
TEXAS: Meet Connect Our Kids Hero David Fowler. David is a Collaborative Family Engagement (CFE) Supervisor at Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for the Highland Lakes Area. A retired Army combat medic with a healthcare and emergency management background, he learned about the role of CASAs in a parenting class. He started as a volunteer but was hired to join the team due to his stellar work.
David was one of our first Family Connections users when Connect Our Kids formally launched our tech tools in 2020. Family Connections allows users to build a support map, similar to a family tree, that details and visually organizes the many relationships in a child’s life into one workspace in an easy-to-read format. He uses our software for all of his cases. Work that used to take weeks to complete is finished in mere hours with the organizational help of Family Connections. The program allows him to find more family members in less time. That search capability is critical when parents are not forthcoming with information about relatives, like in the case of Anna. Using Family Connections, David found an aunt who is now in the process of adopting Anna. “Many times, one side of a family doesn’t even know they have a biological child relative in care… [With the latest technology] if you put forth the effort, you can find anyone,” shares David.
David credits the numerous family searching resources offered within Family Connections, from search engines to social media site shortcuts, for helping him locate family members. In particular, he finds People Search–Connect Our Kids’ proprietary, integrated search engine–and Instant Checkmate to be the most beneficial in conducting successful searches. Connect Our Kids’ People Search is a freely accessible tool that scours 300+ publicly available websites and a database of over 3 billion people to help child welfare professionals find email addresses, phone numbers, physical addresses, social media sites, and family relationships for children in their care. Instant Checkmate is a paid search engine that Family Connections offers as an embedded shortcut for use by those with paid Instant Checkmate accounts. “If you can’t get in touch with the person you’re reaching out to, Instant Checkmate can tell you that person’s neighbors, and I’ve found and engaged connections that way too.”
David feels compelled to work hard on behalf of children in foster care. He wants to use his education and skill set to right a fundamental wrong in the world. “Every child has a family, and I feel they have a right to connect to them. That’s all. And I’ll do what I can to make that happen, which is made a lot easier with the tools Connect Our Kids provides.”
We are honored that Connect Our Kids search tools like Family Connections and People Search have helped David Fowler with his noble mission. We are grateful for his unwavering dedication to finding family and kin for vulnerable children in the Texas foster care system. Thank you, David, for being a hero for children in foster care!
Learn more about how Family Connections can help child welfare professionals quickly identify and contact family members here.
Connect Our Kids is a non-profit dedicated to leveraging technology to find families, build connections, and create a community for children in the foster care system. If you want to support our efforts, you can today by donating HERE.