The emergency room felt hollow to Carrie. But not as hollow as the hole that had been suddenly blown deep in her chest. Her mom had just been admitted to the hospital after another heroin overdose. Her dad had gone to jail years ago, so now Carrie, who had just turned 18, was on her own. She only had a part-time job, not enough to afford an apartment.
Carrie hadn’t even finished High School yet, and she was about to become homeless.
It’s no exaggeration to write that Carrie grew up in what can only be described as a war zone. Many of the teens we see bear similar scars. Sometimes it’s because of abuse, neglect, or disturbing experiences that common decency prevents me from sharing with you. Other times it’s because parents are absent or addicted.
Here’s the harsh reality: thousands of teens in poverty — often called “at risk” — end up without a high school diploma or GED. Many others will age out of the foster care system, many will be tossed onto the streets wounded, broken and still suffering from the nightmares of their pasts. They simply won’t be prepared for life. And without help, these young adults don’t have a prayer of making it.
But before Carrie left the hospital in tears after seeing how sick her mother was, a social worker gave her our phone number.
Carrie needed to get her GED… she needed help with getting her own apartment… she needed help with her resume and job applications… she needed critical job skills training.
The social worker knew that our Workforce Development program was the answer. Carrie was all alone and scared. What will happen to young people like Carrie when they have no one to turn to? Few 18-year-olds are prepared to support themselves, and too often, teens in Carrie’s situation are years behind their peers. They are cut off from most government help, which typically ends at 18.
Will Carrie end up homeless, merely because she turned 18?
For so many, time is running out. We must give these teens the tools they need to survive and thrive. All they want is the same thing that your kids or grandkids want. They want an opportunity to live and work to their fullest potential. If you and I don’t help them now, we know what awaits each of them..
Homelessness. Addiction. Predators. Pimps. Traffickers.
There is a massive gap that must be bridged for these young adults! That’s why we can no longer wait.
Your support will help provide alcohol and drug addiction prevention services. Comprehensive career training that includes GED or high school diploma assistance, career planning, on-the-job technical training in high-growth industries, job placement, health and dental care, a clothing allowance, and more to help young people avoid the streets forever.
Please give as quickly as you can. Thank you for caring.