My name is Kristin Prelipp (Oguntoyinbo). I moved to Orange County in 1991 to attend college. Upon arrival, I knew this was a special place and I decided to make it my home. I married my college sweetheart, we settled in the White Cross area of Orange County and had three children, who are bi-racial. The marriage did not work out so I spent 5 years as a single mom. I was a small business owner at the time and the recession had a very severe impact on my income. It was a scary time! I existed on the “cliff,” which means I made just enough to not be eligible for many resources for those who are struggling to make ends meet, but I did not earn enough to be thriving and successful. As a white woman, I felt the stress of economic difficulty and single parenting but did not have the added stress of racism or fear of being deported as many of my friends of color did. There are doors that are open to me simply by virtue of how I look, doors that I fear are not open to my kids because they are black and have a Nigerian last name.
I hope that Orange County, NC will become an example to the rest of the country of how to build an inclusive community where all people have the ability to thrive and race and ethnicity will no longer predict outcomes. I see the Family Success Alliance and the work of the Orange County Health Department as a part of that. I think that FSA families will lead the way by modeling trusting relationships within and between communities so that all people can get the support they need. I am VERY proud to be a FSA family and I am radically hopeful for the future!