You may remember a story we brought to you a few months ago about Jamyra, who was in our YVLifeset program for the vulnerable people who have aged out of the foster care system. We are thrilled to bring more good news, as Jamyra has achieved success in the program and has been discharged!
After having her first child in the ninth grade and dealing with a toxic home environment, Jamyra’s life was an ordeal of moving to and from foster homes and shelters. Aging out of foster care did not provide any improvement. Less than a year ago, Jamyra was couchsurfing and struggling. Her children had been taken away from her by the court, and nothing she did seemed to convince judges of the truth: that she is a loving mother capable of providing a safe and loving home. The situation appeared to be out of her control, leaving Jamyra without hope and frustrated.
Nine months ago, Jamyra met Lillian Penn, a YVLifeSet caseworker at Turning Points. In these months, Jamyra has been able to make drastic progress. Before entering YVLifeSet, she could only rely on herself. With Penn’s support and guidance, every aspect of Jamyra’s life improved.
Now 21 years old, Jamyra has her children back and a stable job. Penn was able to connect her with subsidized PHA housing that gave Jamyra the opportunity to provide a home for herself and her children that is both affordable and safe. Along with these achievements, the biggest changes Penn noted in Jamyra throughout the months were vast improvements in self-confidence that led to a renewed outlook on life. Following her discharge from YVLifeSet, Jamyra is also actively taking part in Turning Points Parent Support Service program.
YVLifeSet gave Jamyra the opportunity to set goals for herself and achieve them, and Jamyra seized this opportunity with an outcome that shows exactly what the program does to give a voice to the voiceless and hope to the hopeless. She could have become another statistic—an ex-foster child ending up homeless, addicted, incarcerated, or worse. YVLifeSet and Lillian Penn provided Jamyra with resources, connections to programs that helped her succeed, and, most importantly, a positive voice to guide her through a bleak time.
Thank you to our major program supporters: Philadelphia Department of Human Services, Blue Meridian Partners, The Barra Foundation, The Homeless Assistance Fund Inc., Ticket to Dream Foundation, Caroline Alexander Buck Foundation, Edward M. Story Memorial Fund of The Philadelphia Foundation, and The TJX Foundation.
Photo credit: Peggy Baud Woolsey