Book by U of Ottawa student shines light on foster care

Karisa Karmali is blunt about her upbringing in foster care in Ottawa — and that’s exactly how she doles out advice in her new book, The Art of Attitude.

Her philosophy: circumstances don’t determine success, attitude does.

“The people I consider my parents, I only met them when I was 16,” she said.

“I feel like I’ve known them my whole life.”

Karmali, 21, who’s bubbly and full of energy, has been in the system since she was four.

She’s now considered a former youth in care with the Children’s Aid Society of Ottawa and is giving back to her peers with her first self-published project, an inspirational book based on her experiences.

Half of the proceeds will go to the “Just One Person” scholarship for other foster kids now attending uOttawa, and will be matched by the university.

Karmali, who’s taking political science at the school, said now that she’s 21, she no longer gets monthly financial support from CAS.

Her tuition, however, is taken care of.

Karmali’s political aspirations are high, hoping to be an MPP at Queen’s Park one day, eventually returning to Ottawa for a federal seat.

“I feel like I belong there,” she said of Parliament Hill.

And while she knows where she wants to go in life, she still remembers her roots.

“I’m grateful they gave me birth,” she said about her biological parents.

“There’s no relationship there and there never will be.”

The paperback book is $30 and can be bought through her website: theartofattitude.weebly.com

http://www.ottawasun.com/2011/07/10/book-by-u-of-ottawa-students-shines-light-on-foster-care

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