A 19-year-old girl is following her dreams in college after facing hardship for years at home. Youth Haven helped her get there, and they want to do the same for other teenagers.
Jalise Emnanueloi, 19, doesn’t take a safe place to call home for granted.
“I came from a pretty unstable, chaotic family,” Emnanueloi said. “I’ve lived in a handful of different households, including hotels.”
So perhaps it comes as no surprise her passion in life is to literally create stable and sturdy homes.
“My dream is architecture,” Emnaneuloi said. “Just the idea of how a house runs, the functionality of things.”
She also dreams of traveling around the world, but in particular, to places like Paris or Florence. Nevertheless, Emnaneuloi never allowed herself to dream those kinds of dreams before she came to Youth Haven’s transitional living home at ‘Rob’s Cottage’ six months ago. Rob’s Cottage is a refuge for children and teenagers with tough home lives.
Rob’s Group Home plaque. CREDIT: WINK News
Linda Goldfield, the CEO of Youth Haven, spoke with WINK News about those who use the transitional living home.
“Abuse, neglect and often times homelessness,” Goldfield said. “And our goal is to provide normalcy for these children, provide them opportunities to heal from their past experiences, move onto a brighter future.”
All that work takes a lot of cash. Youth Haven’s annual budget is $6,000,000. That’s why Wednesday’s “Cherish The Children” fundraiser is so important.
Cherish The Children event to raise money for Youth Haven. CREDIT: WINK News
“4/5 of our budget comes from community support,” Goldfield said.
87 cents of each dollar raised goes to kids like Emnaneuloi.
“I moved into Rob’s, and I had to learn to be dependent that it wasn’t only me now… that I had help and the support that I was looking for,” Emnanueloi said.
“They’ve been very generous to me. I found trust and all these people very quickly…they’re I don’t wanna start crying,” Emnanueloi said.
Emnanueloi is well on her way in her second semester of college.
Click here if you want to find out more information about the Cherish The Children event on Wednesday.