Time's Running Out
There are only a few hours left to help out families affected by the COVID-19 crisis. Gifts made today will be matched.
#GivingTuesdayNow is almost over. Only a few hours left to help our families affected by the COVID-19 crisis. Gifts made today will be matched up to $50,000 thanks to the generosity of a dedicated group of employees at William Blair and its matching gifts program.
Teen Gains Confidence, Gets Back on Track in Classroom
Gabriel and his mom were barely scraping by.
She was disabled and couldn’t work very much. She did all she could to keep her and Gabriel afloat, but her mobility decreased with each passing year.
After school, Gabriel spent his nights helping get groceries and prepare meals, cleaning the apartment, and taking care of things she couldn’t. He didn’t mind. But caring for his mom didn’t leave him much time to do his homework. He enjoyed school, but compared to the things he was helping with at home, it didn’t feel so important.
After a while, Gabriel’s mom could no longer make rent, and she and Gabriel were kicked out of their apartment. They moved from place to place—each new neighborhood more dangerous than the last.
Eventually, they had to move into a shelter. It became so hard for Gabriel to keep up with what was happening at school—not to mention online assignments and projects that needed school supplies he didn’t have—that he rarely went.
When Gabriel learned he would have to repeat a grade, he dropped out altogether. He tried to support himself and his mom. He took part-time jobs, odd jobs—anything he could. But Gabriel’s mom wanted him to get an education. She wanted Gabriel to have a better life than the one she was able to provide.
Someone who worked at the shelter told her about Mercy Home, and she encouraged Gabriel to visit. He met with our admissions team, and though he was reluctant to live away from his mother, they both knew Mercy Home was the right choice for Gabriel’s future.
When Gabriel moved in, he started working with our tutors and our education team to start catching up on what he had missed in school. It seemed daunting at first. But with time and hard work, Gabriel gained confidence and got back on track.
Now that he has time to devote to his studies, Gabriel loves school. He can focus on one subject at a time, and gets so excited seeing what he is capable of. He will graduate this spring and is looking forward to starting college with confidence in the fall.
Once he caught up in school, Gabriel continued working, too. He has had some wonderful internship experiences after school and over the summer, and his employers are so impressed with his attitude and work ethic.
He has also loved getting to try new activities at Mercy Home—ones he never before had the opportunity to pursue. He plays in our music room, goes on bike rides, plays soccer, and practices his cooking skills. He finally has the chance to learn about himself—his interests and talents—and to enjoy being a teenager.
Gabriel’s mom has been living with a relative and has remained a strong presence in Gabriel’s life. She couldn’t be prouder of the things he has accomplished while in our care.
Gabriel is so grateful for the support and resources you make possible here at Mercy Home. He feels so lucky to have so many opportunities available to him, and works to make sure he takes full advantage of them all.
Thank you for giving a home to Gabriel—and to so many deserving young women and men just like him. We can’t wait to see what his bright future holds.
Please note: Because we care deeply about protecting our children’s privacy, the names and certain identifying details in this story have been changed.