Episode 2

Beating The Odds After Foster Care copy

Season 2 18 October 2021 45 mins

with Cordelia Cranshaw

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Transformation is often about finding your way home; but what does that mean when you have never had a real home? How do you find your way there? My guest on the show had to answer these questions on her own, after spending her childhood in and out of the US Foster Care System. Instead of letting her circumstances define her, Cordelia Cranshaw used her experiences as fuel to transform her life and the lives of those around her. After aging out of Foster Care, she went on to earn a Masters of Social Work degree at age 22 and was named Miss District of Columbia USA 2019. Today, she is a social worker and child welfare advocate, and runs her own organization “Acts of Random Kindness” with a mission of helping individuals in similar situations experience their own life transformations. In this episode, she shares her honest and true story.

About this Episode

Cordelia introduces herself to the listeners. [2:49]

The experience of entering foster care at 5 years old and 14 years old is discussed. [5:35]

Emotions Cordelia felt during her time in the different homes are touched on. [9:47]

At 14, Cordelia had to re-enter foster care. She discusses this experience. [13:34]

Her journey after being made a ward of court is explained. [17:45]

Cordelia was Miss District of Columbia 2019. Her discovery of pageants and the power they had in her life is touched on. [20:41]

Cordelia discusses the work she is doing as a social worker. [26:37]

Advocacy work and the organization Cordelia founded, ‘Acts of Random Kindness’ is explored. [28:32]

Advice Cordelia would give to her young self is given. [31:07]

Cordelia’s purpose and work as a social worker is described. [32:29]

The biggest transformation Cordelia has seen within herself is expressed. [36:33]

Advice for those in the foster system or those who were once in the foster system is given. [41:09]

Cordelia tells us where we can connect with her and her organizations. [42:42]



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“I was destined to give back; I was destined to live the life that I was living so to be able to be in the position that I am today – I didn’t know that at the time.” [11:15-11:24]

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“[Pageants were] a great way to expose me to something that I could latch on to and be proud of and something that could, you know, take my attention off of the pain the depression, and the anxiety, you know all those things I had faced as a young girl.” [22:02-22:30]

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“This system just wasn’t designed to support a child, unfortunately. It was designed to keep them safe, but it wasn’t designed to ensure their success and to ensure they heal from their traumatic experiences.” [26:56-27:14]

Meet Gillian, Your Host

Hosted by ICF Master Coach, Mentor, Meditation & Ayurveda Teacher, Gillian McMichael, this podcast will inspire you to unlock your true purpose and ignite your infinite potential. Now is the time to grow, flourish and thrive as you find your way home, back to your true self.

Meet Gillian