Staff Spotlight: Meet JaRae’ Sommersell

Title at WMPC: Care Coordinator

West Michigan Partnership for Children’s (WMPC) Care Coordinator, JeRae’ Sommersell, is responsible for providing case oversight, consultation and training subcontracted providers to ensure children and families are getting the right services at the right time and moving towards timely permanency. JeRae’ enjoys working with individuals who are passionate about making a change in the lives of children in the foster care system. 

JeRae’ has had seven years of experience within the nonprofit industry and is excited to continue her career at WMPC. 

“WMPC has an amazing mission, ambitious goals, and loving values that make it a great place to work. I was inspired by their passion and devotion to children within the foster care system.”

Continue reading to learn more about JeRae’:

Number of years you’ve worked in the nonprofit industry: 7 years

1. What is your role at WMPC? What are your responsibilities in this role?

My role at WMPC as a Care Coordinator is to provide case oversight, consultation, and training to subcontracted providers and ensure the effective and efficient authorization of all resources and appropriate services to children and their families.

2. What is the most rewarding part about your job?

The most rewarding part of my job is being able to work with individuals who are passionate and driven about making changes to the foster care system in Kent County.

3. On the flip side, what is the most challenging part about your job?

In the nonprofit industry, there is always work to be done. Although we are making great strides at WMPC, it can be challenging to see how much work still needs to be done when it comes to the foster care system, not only in Kent County but the state of Michigan as a whole. 

4. What inspired you to want to work for WMPC?

WMPC has an amazing mission, ambitious goals and loving values that make it a great place to work. I was inspired by their passion and devotion to children within the foster care system. I also feel empowered by WMPC’s intention to advance racial equality in the child welfare system.

5. What is one thing you wish people knew about foster care?

I wish people were aware of how more foster homes can increase opportunities for children who enter the foster care system and allow the children to remain in their school district, communities and stay close to siblings. Doing this minimizes the disruption to their lives during a difficult time.

6. How has your position at WMPC and your experience in the nonprofit industry changed your perspective?

Having seven years of experience within the nonprofit industry, I’ve realized that we can implement more change when we work collaboratively as a team.

7. What is your hope for WMPC and the Kent County foster care system?  

I hope that as WMPC and Kent County Foster Care System continue to collaborate, we see a decrease in the number of children of color coming into care and an increase in people of color becoming licensed foster homes.

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