It's virtually impossible to look at Melinda Medina and see the scars of her past. The only real clue that may tip you off is that she is extremely passionate about helping people who are in need. Born as the third of nine children, to a mother who suffered from childhood abuse and domestic violence, Melinda was eventually placed into foster care at the tender age of six years old. She was twenty years old by the time she was out of foster care, but by then she had been placed in 25-30 different homes and had experienced homelessness several times in between.She boldly and bravely shares her story that includes being a victim of sexual abuse, becoming pregnant at age thirteen, giving birth at age fourteen, and being forced to drop out of school. Yet, despite having another child at age fifteen, she graduated high school on time and with honors. Immediately after aging out of foster care, Melinda was able to gain custody of one of younger siblings that still remained in foster care.
No matter what life has thrown her way, Melinda has decided to overcome and use her pain as fuel to help others. As an active co-founder of SaySo, (Strong Able Youth Speaking Out) she has been recognized as a national advocate for children in foster care. She's also gone on to receive several college degrees, including an Associates of Arts, a Bachelors in Criminal Justice, and a Post Baccalaureate Paralegal Degree. Yet, her greatest joys in life are her three beautiful adult daughters.