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Angela’s reaching an understanding

January 5, 2015
Because of her tendency to take on too much, Angela sometimes becomes overwhelmed. Angela’s the first in her family to attend college and has needed support not only to get through school, but also to budget money and her time. Angela is driven and many times finds what she needs, but with the support of TL Specialist Corey Nixon (left), she’s beginning to make time for herself and achieve more balance.

Because of her tendency to take on too much, Angela sometimes becomes overwhelmed. Angela’s the first in her family to attend college and has needed support not only to get through school, but also to budget money and her time. Angela is driven and many times finds what she needs, but with the support of TL Specialist Corey Nixon (left), she’s beginning to make time for herself and achieve more balance.

Angela, 18, completed high school and attends a local university where she has a full load of classes. She aspires to be a forensic psychologist.

Youth Villages’ transitional living program provides young adults leaving state custody the intensive support and guidance they need to make a successful transition to adulthood. The program helps young people learn to deal with the minor and major problems that come with adulthood. They help participants find housing and health services, learn how to access transportation and meet their basic needs. Specialists teach life skills like time management, budgeting, menu planning and grocery shopping. Learn how you can support the TL program at lostat18.org.

Angela and her siblings suffered abuse and neglect at very young ages. Angela spent time living with distant relatives throughout the country before entering foster care at 16. In high school, she busied herself with numerous school clubs and organizations, as well as volunteering at homeless shelters, retirement homes and a local public television station.

She lives in a foster home with one sibling and has limited contact with the others. She was referred to Youth Villages’ transitional living program in March through North Carolina Division of Social Services.

“I was very interested in the program because of my situation,” Angela said. “My parents weren’t around during my adolescence and I didn’t know how to do things, like open a bank account.”

Taking advantage of opportunities is something Angela does very well, even if it requires more time than she has to devote to it.

“When she was a senior in high school, she was just trying to graduate,” said Corey Nixon, Youth Villages transitional living specialist. “She kept a decent grade point average, but got bogged down sometimes because of all of her commitments.”

Being in TL has helped Angela recognize that taking on too much can be a hindrance.

“I’m adapting,” she said. “But I’m still a work in progress.”

Making time for friends and having a social life are things she overlooked.

“We work quite a bit on time management,” Corey said. “We’re trying to get more balance in her life. She’s very busy and very productive, but she doesn’t have a lot of time to do things people her age do.”

Angela has it together. Her hard work coming to terms with her past has helped her accomplish a lot.

Her motivation and ambition are assets, and Corey provides support to help ensure Angela achieves her goals.

“Angela is very proactive when it comes to taking care of her needs,” Corey said. “She’s the first in her family to attend college and to make that transition to college easier, she enrolled in a summer bridge program.”

She is confident she would have succeeded without Youth Villages, but recognizes the benefits of being in the TL program.

“It is good to have Corey around to talk to and provide support,” Angela said. “I have discovered the strength to believe in myself and be an example not only to my siblings, but to others who have experienced similar conflicts in their life.”

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