The world can be a cruel place for a foster child, a reality that Ashley Rhodes-Courter captures in her 2008 New York Times bestseller Three Little Words. Born in 1985, Rhodes-Courter entered the Florida fostercare system when she was three. The young girl lived in 14 different homes, some of them abusive, before the age of 12, when she was finally adopted permanently into a family. She went on to graduate from college with honors and traveled to South Africa and China to expand her knowledge of child-welfare systems across the world. Now, many awards, television appearances and one book later, the plucky author speaks regularly about the importance of finding loving and permanent homes for foster children everywhere. Rhodes-Courter appears on Friday, May 18, at Copperfield's Books. 3900-A Bel Aire Plaza, Napa. 5pm. Free. 707.252.8002.
The stories just keep coming. From the beating of an unarmed teenager in the early morning outside of a local high school to the seemingly overzealous, YouTube-posted manhandling of a drunken reveler after last year's Handcar Regatta, police brutality is an unfortunate reality in the North Bay. This week, the Police Accountability Clinic and Helpline (PACH) hosts a training called "Do You Know Your Rights?" The two-hour session addresses what is legal, how to increase your safety during police interactions, how to assert your rights if a confrontation does occur, and includes "what if" scenarios and a Q&A period. Know where you stand on Saturday, May 19, at the Arlene Francis Center. 99 Sixth St., Santa Rosa. 2:30pm. $10, no one turned away for lack of funds. 707.542.7224.—Leilani Clark