Wohoo! Only $200 more toward our goal!!!
Please remember, no amount is too small and it's tax deductible!!! Thank you in advance for all your help and prayers!
FUNDRAISING MATCH HAS BEGUN
WE NEED TO MATCH $1250.00
We have raised $850.00, only $400.00 more!!!
Growing up I experienced a lot of death in a short period of time, dealing with my parents devorce, and mental illnesses developing all led to a toxic relationship between my mother and I. Everything was unhealthy between us and after a couple failed suicide attempts, we got into a bad fight one day and she told me if I didn't like things the way they were that I could just leave; so I did.
I ended up finding some juggalos and gutterpunks that befriended me and helped me out. They looked out for me and made sure I was safe and taken care of. On the streets at 15, going by the name Twin, a name someone that I was squatting with, who had a daughter that was 6 months older than me and we looked exactly alike, I started drinking every day and night; little did I realize that it was turning me into an alcoholic. I drank hard liquor everyday for over a year before I realized I was getting sick without it. Thankfully it was only my body that was addicted so I was able to kick the booze pretty quick. But at 16 I started smoking meth and that was my weakness. I only smoked it for 2 years but the amount that I comsumed should have killed me.
I wasn't able to put it down until 2012 when I found out that I was pregnant with my daughter Anastasia. I was so scared but I knew I needed to keep her. My mother let me move back in, for awhile, to raise my daughter. She's 5 years old now and the years have definitely been a crazy rollercoaster of emotion. I was a stay at home mother until last year; part of it was because I wanted to stay home and raise her until school and partly due to having not child care or reliable transportation. It was definitely frustrating sometimes but it was all the more rewarding to be able to be there the whole time before school.
When I finally got a job at Purple Door Coffee, a specialty espresso bar and coffee roaster in Denver, Colorado that employs teens and young adults who have been homeless and want to leave homelessness behind, it was a huge mix of emotions; I was excited that I was finally going to be working and making money but at the same time I was nervous that I would mess up and lose my job. By this time my mother was wanting me to move out again so I stayed place to place again until I just finally got my first ever apartment in May. Having my own space has been awesome and stressful at the same time; it's definitely the biggest step I've taken in my adult life. It's pretty scary, but usually the best things come from stepping out of your comfort zone.
When I was asked to go to Rome I was overwhelmed with joy and happiness. I've wanted to go since the program started and I was honestly shocked that I got asked. I appreciate the opportunity more than anyone knows. I feel like this trip to Rome will open my eyes even more to the beauty and diversity of the world. I think it'll definitely make a huge positive impact in my life in ways I might not even know are possible yet.
My plan for my daughter's future so far is to continue to nurture her love for people and school. My hope it that she'll stick it out and graduate high school and end up in a career that she loves. I know it's not much but what I hope for the most, is that Anastasia will be happy and comfortable in life. The most loving and simple thing a parent could ask for.