rom foster kid to foster parent. Her memoir, Three Little Words became a NYT bestseller when Ashley was 22. It is currently being made into a major motion picture. Her new book, Three More Words was just released and debuted as a #1 Bestseller on Amazon.

Ashley is young, energetic, and inspiring. She overcame a childhood of abuse and neglect and beat all odds to become an outstanding advocate and voice for children.

Her stories are shocking, compelling, and motivating. Tune in to hear about her journey. She is simply amazing!

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An Interview with Ashley Rhodes Courter


Shorecrest’s Guardian ad Litem service club sits down with Ashley Rhodes-Courter before her talk at the school. Each year, Shorecrest Preparatory School collects gifts and necessities for children in the Guardian ad Litem program for the holidays…


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5 MSW@USC Graduates Who Are Making a Difference

MSW@USC graduates leave our program ready to create significant change in their communities and throughout the world. Our rigorous curriculum prepares students to be leaders in social work, and the variety of our focused concentration areas allows students to individualize their coursework based on their own unique goals and aspirations. Graduates are passionate about making a difference, and the MSW@USC program gives them the tools to do just that. The following five MSW@USC graduates are great examples of how our students have used their education and experience in unique and innovative ways.


1. Ashley Rhodes-Courter

Concentration: Families and Children

Born to a single mother, Ashley Rhodes-Courter entered Florida’s foster care system when she was 3 years old. After moving between 14 different homes, she was finally adopted when she was 12. Despite her challenges, Ashley is a firm believer that “it’s not enough to complain about something if you’re not willing to be a part of the solution.” Now an MSW@USC graduate, Ashley commits herself to advocating for other foster children. She wrote a memoir about her challenging childhood,Three Little Words, which is now being made into a major motion picture. Her second book, Three More Words, was published in June and expands on life beyond the foster care system. Through her perseverance, Ashley has become an internationally recognized speaker on foster care, adoption, education, child welfare, human rights, families, youth advocacy, women’s issues and overcoming adversity.


It’s not enough to complain about something if you’re not willing to be a part of the solution.


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10 News: Who failed our children? Former foster parent speaks

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Ashley Rhodes – Courter says she knows first hand about the death of a child.

“We saw are kids sent back to these homes they were taken away from, and pray nothing would happen, then it did,” says Rhodes-Courter, a child welfare advocate.

Rhodes-Courter was a foster parent for Jenica Randazzo, who was killed by a family member after being put back into the care of her grandparents. Continue reading

Dallas CASA to feature Ashley Rhodes-Courter at its fundraising dinner

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Dallas CASA will present best-selling author Ashley Rhodes-Courter and honor AT&Tand its employees at a fundraising dinner Oct. 14 at The Fairmont Dallas.

The charity, which helps abused children navigate the legal system, will give the annual Judge Barefoot Sanders Champion of Children Award to AT&T. The prize pays tribute to the company’s financial support as well as the 800 volunteer hours logged annually by its employees. AT&T chairman and CEO Randall L. Stephenson will accept the award. Continue reading

Three More Words, Three Little Words: A Good Book and Essay Contest

Three Little Words is eye-opening, breathtaking and painful. A young woman tells her story of growing up in the foster care system here in West/Central Florida, eventually ending up at Tampa Children’s Home before she is finally adopted after spending nearly 10 years in foster care. The memoir account of Ashley Rhodes-Courter has been widely acclaimed since it was published in 2008. She tells her unique story, but thousands of others must have their own variations, some happier, some more tragic than others.

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‘Three Little Words’ A Must-Read for Child Welfare Professionals

The odds seemed to be stacked against Ashley Rhodes Carter. Born to a teenage mother in Florida in 1985 and removed from her mother at the age of three, she spent ten years in 14 different homes, surviving abuse, neglect, and separation from her brother.


But Ashley defeated the odds. Adopted at the age of 12, Ashley completed high school, went to college on a full scholarship, and obtained a master’s in social work. In 2008, Ashley published Three Little Words, chronicling her harrowing journey through the child welfare system and her eventual adoption by a family whose loving care enabled her to blossom into an accomplished and successful adult.

I just discovered this book, which is surprisingly classified as Young Adult. But Three Little Words should be required reading for any child welfare professional. Ashley’s story illustrates some ways that things have improved and some ways they haven’t, and casts light on debates that are still raging. People should know that adoption is not just to find adoption legal service, complete the procedures and gain ownership, but to develop love and togetherness. 

Unhelpful Front End

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Reading Group Guide: Three More Words

A Reading Group Guide to

three-more-words-9781481415576_hrThree More Words

By Ashley Rhodes-Courter

About the Book

In this sequel to Three Little Words, a memoir about a young girl who lived in fourteen different foster care homes over a period of ten years before being adopted as a teenager, Rhodes-Courter now details her life as a college student and young woman. In this remarkable coming-of-age narrative, Rhodes-Courter forges ahead with her life by building new relationships and establishing a career as a motivational speaker.

Haunted by a turbulent childhood, Rhodes-Courter illustrates the healing powers of love and a young woman’s emotional strength, as she shares with readers the struggles she navigated while coming to terms with her past.

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Reading Group Guide: Three Little Words

Three Little WordsThree Little Words

A Memoir
By Ashley Rhodes-Courter

A Reading Group Guide to
Three Little Words: A Memoir
By Ashley Rhodes-Courter

About the Book
Ashley was only three years old when she was taken from her mother — too young to understand why she couldn’t stay with the mother she adored and she could not possibly have realized that she was going to spend the next nine years bouncing from one foster family to another. As a small child she could not stand up for herself when the people that were charged with her care failed her. At twenty years old, her mother Lorraine was also too young to take responsibility for her two children or negotiate the legal system that tore apart her family. Three Little Words is Ashley’s story, told in her voice, about the time she spent without Lorraine, and her search for someone to mother her. It contains all the passion and detail that can only come from someone who has experienced the foster care system from the inside. Continue reading