Errol is a true Eckerd Kids’ Project Bridge success story. He came to the program through the standard Department of Juvenile Justice referral. The teen had been kicked out of vocational training due to anger issues, and he wasn’t making progress educationally. He seemed like another young man that was heading down a path to nowhere. However, Project Bridge was there to intervene. Errol was referred to Project Bridge for vocational, educational and mentoring services.
Errol at first progressed slowly and did not seem to understand the need to peruse his GED. However, his Transition Coordinator and a Program Manager decided to help push Errol forward.
It was discovered that Errol just needed a short refresher on high school math, and then he would be ready for the GED exam. His care workers also arranged for him to get his resume updated. They counseled him on interview skills: what to wear, how to present himself, how to answer questions and where to apply.
One morning when care workers came to pick Errol up, his hair was neatly trimmed, his clothes fit perfectly and he was all smiles. He jumped in the van and said “I got a job!”
Errol is on his way to becoming a manager at the fast food restaurant where he works – after just one week on the job, he was already training new employees on the register and how to work the equipment. Errol has completed the program, his community service hours and has obtained his SafeStaff food handler’s certification.
Errol is a role model for all youth involved in Project Bridge. He is proof that with dedication, determination and some strong support, young adults can make it in this world despite early difficulties. All youth, regardless of their circumstances, can have a second chance at a life filled with hope, joy and unimaginable happiness. Errol is a shining example of what Project Bridge is all about.