Junely Merwin was born and raised in Los Angeles, California where she entered the foster care system at the age of fifteen with her one-month-old son in her arms. Exiting foster care, Junely earned a full-ride scholarship at California State University Fullerton where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Human Services with a concentration in Mental Health and Community Practice. Junely is passionate about community engagement and social justice. She devotes herself to advocacy work to raise foster care awareness through social media and her website merwinjayact.com.
She has advocated on behalf of numerous legislations impacting youth in foster care and co-authored two federal policy reports: Seeing Beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic: Creating Change for Vulnerable Children and Families and Building the Path Forward for Change in the Child Welfare System through the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute. She wrote two federal policy reports focused on Supporting Pregnant and Parenting Youth in Foster Care.