Not terribly long ago, I was in and out of foster care programs having been taken out of a broken and abusive home. I hated the cold, restrictive environment of the many group homes. It felt as though they were trying to imprison discarded youth like myself, not help them. My hunger for freedom was what brought me to the streets. I actually didn’t mind it too much then, but then again I didn’t have anything better to compare it to. Eventually though, things came to a breaking point as I began struggling with severe medical issues. At first I resisted help because my experiences in the foster care system left me so jaded. But finally when my life was in imminent danger, I had no choice but to seek shelter. That was how I came to Larkin Street.
It was hard at first because I didn’t know what stability was. But because Larkin Street met me where I was at and didn’t give me an ultimatum in order to receive support, I felt comfortable working with them as I was sorting my life out and healing at my own pace. In this way, I was able to more easily get what I needed to survive and at the same time slowly open up to the idea of it being okay to ask for help. Most of the youth like myself who come into Larkin Street are escaping really bad situations which they had no control over. Most of us are very resilient, having been through so much hardship. Still no one can succeed completely on their own… Everyone needs support sometimes, especially equal access to healthy food, housing, and education.
Largely in thanks to having access to these services, I have had the chance to focus on improving my health through proper nutrition and healthy lifestyle. I now rarely struggle with the health problems that I once did, and this has inspired a passion in me to become a doctor of naturopathic medicine. I would like to inspire and educate people on how they can achieve health and wellness. I am now pursuing my degree in college and having a cumulative GPA of over 3.5. I want to give a big thank you to everyone who helps make Larkin Street possible; you are directly responsible for helping give me the opportunity to pursue my passions and discover what I’m truly capable of.