Six years ago I came into the SE Works Youth Center crying for help. I was 16 I had no hope of doing anything with my life other than following suit of my parents. I had dropped out of high school to help raise my younger siblings during the height of my mother’s meth addiction, just as well there was no escape offered from my father as he was also a drug addict and the house that we lived in was riddled with syringes and filth.

I had taken a leave from school and was residing with various friends as much as possible when I was referred to the Youth Center by a friend that had previously gone through the program. The Youth Center staff helped me get my GED, helped me find a job and got me on track to get into college. The staff helped me get my own apartment so that I could move out of the crack house that I had previously been living in with my dad.

This year I graduated from PCC with my Associate’s Degree in Science and I am now enrolled at Portland State University. I am now a college senior, and I am studying for my Bachelors in Psychology. I am only a few years away from an amazing career as a counselor for troubled youth.