When I was asked by World Relief to capture a portrait of a woman who empowers and advocates for other women for their #ThankGodForWomen campaign immediately this beautiful woman came to mind so I was excited when she agreed to allow me to capture her and ask some questions about her current role as a social worker and her over 20 year journey in standing with vulnerable families. This is Tyesa. She empowers women and children by advocating for them and walking alongside families through some of the most traumatic times of their lives as they navigate the DCFS system. Her calming presence and amazing smile invites trust the moment you meet her. When I asked her about her calming presence, she said, “It’s easy to be calm in these hard situations, because I put myself in their shoes and think about how I would want to be treated… It’s a hard job, but when you love what you do, it makes it easy.”
Tyesa says the best part of her job is being able to help children achieve permanency, either through adoption or returning home. The most difficult part? When children can’t return home and get stuck in a backlogged court system. Becoming a foster parent myself has opened my eyes to the vulnerability of these children. Without loving, devoted, and caring people like Tyesa, they can get lost in an overwhelming system. Her ability to maintain hope, compassion, and empathy through more than 20 years of service is amazing. She sees hope and points others to it! I thank God for women like Tyesa because she has personally touched our family through her expertise and advocacy on behalf of our foster daughter. She has been a life line for us as we advocate together for our daughter's best interests.
Check out World Relief's instagram feed for the post & to celebrate other strong women like Tyesa and the female photographers capturing these important stories!
Reposted from World Relief: Over the years, we have worked with so many women who have been called by God to capture and share the stories of others through the lens of a camera. For the next few weeks, we will share the work of four of these photographers + the stories of women they have photographed. Today's photo and story comes from @roxengstrom (@hawaimages )