Seattle’s Child is proud to partner with the state Department of Children, Youth and Families Strengthening Families Washington to honor outstanding caregivers doing important work on behalf of children.
All month long, we’ll introduce you to Unsung Heroes from around the state: biological parents, grandparents, foster and adoptive parents. Some volunteer at local schools; some have started nonprofits; some mentor others in their communities. Enjoy their stories.
Monica Villanueva Holmes, Tulalip
Monica and her husband, Eric, are foster/adoptive parents of 18 children in 18 years. They live in Tulalip with their four adopted sons from foster care, all on the autism spectrum with additional behavioral health challenges and special needs. Although 2020 has been a challenging year homeschooling and supporting four special needs teens/young adults through the pandemic, Monica is no stranger to adapting and pivoting; and she does so while continually strengthening and giving back to the BIPOC and special-needs communities.
Monica’s work with at-risk youth, tribal youth, tribal adults and individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities includes teaching life skills, culinary skills, positive behavior supports, sensory development, suicide and drug prevention and art therapy. Monica reaches out to other special needs and foster/adoptive parents to provide peer support and connection. Recognizing a need for equitable birthing options and outcomes for other BIPOC women and marginalized communities, Monica certified as a birth and postpartum doula this past year. Monica is fearless as she boldly leads with her heart. She combines her skills, creativity, empathy and personal experiences as a BIPOC special needs foster/adoptive mom to make her community a more equitable, inclusive and loving place for ALL!
Nominator: Alaina Kube
More Unsung Heroes: