Get to Know Rachel

How did you first come to know C.A.S.E.?
I first came to know of C.A.S.E. when I submitted a writing piece in hopes of being considered to be included in the Beneath the Mask: For Teen Adoptees: Teens and Young Adults Share Their Stories.
How has your work with C.A.S.E. impacted you and your family?
My work with C.A.S.E. has been fundamental in my personal healing regarding my own adoption. Working alongside the amazing staff at the organization has taught me so much about navigating adoption trauma. C.A.S.E. has given me a safe space express, share & channel all my feelings on adoption.
Why did you want to become an Emerging Leader at C.A.S.E., and what do you hope to achieve during your time as a Board Member?
I wanted to become an Emerging Leader at C.A.S.E. because I wanted to give back to the adoption community that has been so supportive of my adoption journey over the years. While serving on the board, I hope to help create a space where adoptees can feel dedicated to using their own adoption experience as a source of help to others. Whether it be working with other adoptees, their parents or advocating for adoptees & foster care children, I hope to encourage our team to use our stories to open up those difficult conversations that we know need to be had.
Tell us about your life outside C.A.S.E.: What do you do professionally and what are your interests outside work?
Outside of C.A.S.E. I own a small pet care company in Frederick, Maryland that offers dog walking, boarding, pet sitting & training. We spend our days spoiling pets when their owners cannot. When I’m not working, I am either taking orders from my four children or trying to find a quiet place to escape! I love to travel the world, lay in my bed & eat divine food that I really can’t afford.
March is National Social Work Awareness Month. Can you share how a social worker/therapist has made an impact in your life?
Social workers have been active parts of my life for as long as I can remember as I find tremendous value in therapy. They have helped me through some of my darkest life moments with such gentle guidance & grace. I’d like to thank all the amazing social workers & therapists who work tirelessly to provide mental health services to adoptees & beyond.

Rachel Shifaraw was internationally adopted from Santiago, Chile at 6 weeks of age. She has lived in Maryland ever since & currently resides in Frederick with her husband & four children. Rachel has a Bachelor’s Degree in Forensic Psychology from Trinity University in Washington, DC & an Associate of Applied Science from Montgomery College in Rockville, Maryland. Rachel came to C.A.S.E. with a writing contribution that was published in the Beneath The Mask Workbook & she has been passionate about working with the organization from that day forward. Rachel joined the Emerging Leaders Council in hopes of giving a voice of lived adoption experience to assist C.A.S.E. in their mission of offering adoption support. When not busy with her family or small pet care company, Rachel spends her time writing descriptive stories & hanging out with animals on the local Frederick farms.