From Unsure to Understood

by | Dec 15, 2021 | YOUTH STORIES

Alisha entered the foster care system at seven after enduring years of emotional and physical abuse from her father. Her mother, a drug addict and alcoholic, was never in her life. Over the next 14 years, Alisha moved a total of 26 times, eventually ending up in San Diego.

While attending San Diego State University, Alisha met Just in Time alumna (and now staff member) Simone, who was then working as the school’s Guardian Scholars program coordinator, supporting students who had spent time in foster care. Simone encouraged Alisha to join the Just in Time community. At first, she was hesitant but hoped she would find people who were motivated and trying to “push us to be our best selves.” And that’s in fact what she found.

Alisha joined Career Horizons and was immediately connected to very supportive women who helped her realize “there are people out there who want us to succeed.” One of the most valuable connections was to her coach, Lucia.

“She’s like a mom to me,” Alisha says of Lucia. “She said she would be whatever I needed her to be. It took me a while to understand what that meant. She really understood me and didn’t try to put words in my mouth. She would just listen and help me process my thoughts, to either gain clarity or to help me move forward. I love her.”

Reflecting on her experience with Career Horizons, Alisha says, “It makes me feel like I’m not alone. We all went through something similar but we are all pushing through to be who we want to be and not letting past experiences get in the way of that.”

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Welcome to JIT!

We're excited to meet you! More than half our staff are former foster youth, many of us have participated in JIT’s services. We understand first-hand the challenges that each of us face on our path to self-sufficiency. And we are proof that having essential resources and consistent relationships with caring adults can have a lasting positive impact. Reliable, Responsive Real– JIT peers, coaches and staff share a common commitment to empowering you. Welcome to YOUR new community.

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Co-authored by Just in Time staff with lived experience, this book is sparking the nationwide conversation around a new, youth-led mental model for young people leaving foster care.

 

 

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