Think back to when you were a teenager. Were you ready to be independent when you were 18? Or was the transition from being dependent on someone else for your care and daily needs to supporting yourself a difficult transition? It’s an exciting, yet scary time of life. Many people enjoyed this transition with the support of close family who made sure they didn’t go hungry when the electric bill spiked unexpectedly. They were given counsel and encouragement. However, for some—the change is not so easy. Especially for those teenagers who have aged out of foster care and lack a strong familial support system.
Youth in Transition is an organization that offers empowerment to these teenagers. Having spent the last 20 years at Goodwill Industries, Youth in Transition has transitioned as well, now falling under the umbrella of services offered by Crossnore School & Children’s Home. It’s a perfect segue, as Crossnore School & Children’s Home has spent the past year enhancing and increasing the services offered to children in need.
Youth in Transition’s Program Director, Karon McKinney, shared, “Bringing Youth in Transition to Crossnore School & Children’s Home only makes sense. We are offering a valuable service to the clients they already serve, and it makes the whole experience easier for everyone involved. We can utilize many of the resources Crossnore School & Children’s Home already have in place, including trauma support. We want every young adult who is starting out to feel empowered, and we are working hard to give them the life skills they need.”
The life skills that are addressed include cooking and cleaning; financial education; social skills; decision making; process education; and healthy relationship development.
“We are starting with teenagers as young as 14, and we serve young adults through the age of 26,”” said Karon. “We want to prepare them over a few years rather than have them age out and be ill-prepared for what awaits them. For many, our agency is the only support system they have.”
Whether these young adults meet one-on-one or in a group session, discussions are tailored to their unique concerns, and action plans are developed to help them reach their ultimate goal. They are coached through many of the skills others may take for granted, simply because they haven’t been able to learn by observation in a traditional family setting.
“For many in the program, they have experienced trauma that would be inconceivable to many.” Karon continued, “With the right direction, we can empower and equip a young adult on the path for a better future.”
The program is a bridge, designed to serve those young adults who have had a rough start but are headed down a smoother road.
For more information about Youth in Transition, and how you can help, please visit Crossnore.org or call 336-331-2137.
It’s a great time to give to Crossnore School & Children’s Home! Consider a one-time or recurring financial donation, and help this wonderful organization as they seek to offer love, support, and encouragement to children who have been removed from their families.
Make plans to attend the Whimsical Women crafts fair at Crossnore School & Children’s Home on November 18th from 10 AM–3 PM. The fair will feature local and regional artists! Rain Date: November 19th.