“The Power Of A Friend”
As we prepare to go back to school, we wanted to share this powerful testimonial to the power of mentorship!
My name is Liz, and I’m a staff member in Holy Family’s Student Assistance Program. Today, I want to tell you about a young woman named Carly.* I met Carly last year when she walked into the guidance office at her school. She seemed nervous and scared. Soon, we realized that Carly only had just a few days to avoid becoming homeless. An unstable family situation made it incredibly hard for her to complete her coursework or even make it to class.
Soon, we realized that turning in assignments late was the least of Carly’s problems. Her anxiety was so severe that she had trouble getting on the bus in the morning and interacting with peers at school. She didn’t have a strong support system, either at home or in class, which made coping with these issues even harder. Even though she was a senior, Carly didn’t think she could graduate high school.
Within a few weeks, we matched Carly with a quirky, thoughtful therapist who understands her struggles perfectly. We made sure she had a warm bed to sleep in at night, a ride to school every morning, and a welcoming space to vent when it felt like the rest of the world was against her. She still meets with her therapist and case manager every week, but she’s a completely independent young woman now. She manages her money wisely, she cultivates good friendships in school, she’s found a supportive relationship, and she’s confident in her talents and abilities. Because of that, her self-esteem and self-confidence have gone through the roof.
Now, when Carly visits our office for her therapy sessions, she waves hello to everyone and shares enthusiastically about her friends and interests. It’s so refreshing to see her thrive and blossom. After graduating from high school and enrolling at a local college, Carly is excited to see what her future has in store…and so are we! Our Student Assistance Program (SAP) works within local schools to help students who are coping with traumatic events like loss, family strife, financial anxiety, or abuse. Last year, we worked with almost 500 students like Carly. We believe that they just need someone to be on their side, advocating for them and believing in them!
*name changed to protect privacy