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Mar 31, 2016

Changing the Course of my Life

My name is Jeremy. I am 18 years old and currently reside at the Cordero House. Over the past two years that I have lived here, it has become evident to me that there is not a single thing in this life that should be taken for granted. I do my best to approach every day with passion, vigor and love for all things. I love being alive! I know that now. But it was not always that way. Growing up, I lived with my adopted parents and five siblings (three brothers and two sisters). My dad had an amazing job that allowed us to live in a beautiful home, sitting on 6 acres of property, with a panoramic view of Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Rainier, Mt. Adams and Mt. Hood. We had everything that we ever wanted, and more. Although now I can look back and see how privileged I was to live in such a beautiful place, at the time I remained ignorant to the beauty of the world around me. From the outside, my family may have appeared similar to your stereotypical “Partridge Family.” But the things that went on behind closed doors were anything but. I lived in that home until I was 16 years old. I made plenty of mistakes that I now regret with all of my heart, and I damaged the very relationships that meant the most to me. My life had been shattered, and I could not even see that it was by my own doing.

It took three months of being locked up to teach me that life is not a game. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction, I learned that the hard way. Try spending three months without seeing the sun or the stars, or without breathing in the fresh spring air. It was probably the hardest thing that I have ever had to do. Those three months truly humbled me and caused me to see life from a much different perspective. When I was presented with the opportunity to go live at the Cordero House, I jumped on it.

Since being at Cordero House, I have learned soooo much. I have made significant strides towards improving my own life, as well as the lives of those that I have hurt. I have become so much more responsible than I was before, I graduated high school with a 3.8 GPA and I have even begun taking online college courses. I also have learned how to play guitar from a few of the staff at my program which has always been a dream of mine. My life has truly taken a turn for the better. I see the goodness inside of people that I once believed did not exist. I have a much brighter outlook on the world than I did before. I feel blessed to live with such stupendous people who truly care about others and that make it their life’s work to help people like me become successful in life. Without the help of Cordero and all of the staff that devote their time there, I don’t think my life would look quite as it does today. I owe so much to them and I truly treasure all of those who have helped me along throughout this journey in my life. I have truly discovered myself, my values, and the role in which I am to play in this world. I have found my purpose in life and I plan to pursue it.

Looking ahead, I will be graduating the program at Cordero in about four months. I will be attending Portland State University this fall. Two years ago, I never even dreamed that this would be a possibility. Through my own hard work and the relentless and compassionate effort of all the staff at Cordero, this has become my reality. I have made plenty of mistakes that I wish that I could take back. But with all of the things that I have learned in my time at Cordero, I can now work hard to overcome my mistakes and be the man that my own parents never thought that I could be. The man that I never thought I could be. Every day is a new adventure, a gift. I see that now. Thank you to all of the wonderful people at Cordero House and Janus Youth Programs that have made all of this possible. You are all truly amazing, I wish that there were more people like you in this world. My time at Cordero House has had a truly profound impact on my life, one that I will never forget. Thank you.

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Jul 19, 2017
Play Golf and Support Janus Youth!

The Herm Gilliam Memorial Golf Tournament for Kids takes place on August 21st. Join us for a fun-filled afternoon of golf, contests, awards, lunch and dinner at the Riverside Golf & Country Club. Register today!. More than a great afternoon of golf, the Herm Gilliam Memorial Golf Tournament for Kids is about changing lives and building futures for 6,000 youth each year.

A member of the Trail Blazers 1976-77 NBA Championship Team, Herm served on Janus' Board of Directors and chaired our Scholarship Fund. With his passing, the community lost a true friend and one of its greatest treasures. 

Jul 12, 2017
Enter Our Wine Drawing!

Don’t miss your chance to stock your wine cellar while doing something good for Janus youth. Enter to win one of two wine lots that are unique collections of highly-rated wines.

Wines of the World
A collection of wines from around the world.

Wines of the Pacific Northwest
This collection features outstanding wines, including pinots from across the region.

All wines have been stored in a temperature-controlled cellar. You can't get your hands on these wines unless you win this drawing.

There is no need to be present to win. There are only 100 tickets per wine lot. Drawing is August 21st. Tickets are $100.00 each per wine lot.

You can purchase tickets through PayPal or by contacting Rosalie Karp at 503-542-4605, rkarp@janusyouth.org.

Jul 12, 2017
In Memory of Insights Founder, Diane Cohen-Alpert

On July fourth, Multnomah County lost a visionary advocate and Janus’ Insights Teen Parent Program lost one of its founders, Diane Cohen-Alpert—who was an unparalleled leader in the local and national teen parent community for over thirty years. Through her work with other youth organizations in the 1970s, Diane recognized the unique needs and the incredible strength in teen parents. Recognizing the gap in services for teen parents, Diane created Insights Teen Parent Program, which has been in operation uninterrupted since its incorporation under her leadership.

Diane had a passion for families and community. According to Lori Schroeder, supervisor of the Insights SEEDS and Home Safe Programs, “Diane created an atmosphere at work that allowed us bringing our kids to the office. She created a very nourishing atmosphere.” She was instrumental in the creation of the Harry’s Mother program—still Multnomah County’s only 24-hour youth hotline and emergency shelter for runaway youth and one of the first of its kind in the country. Says Dennis Morrow, Janus’ Executive Director, “I worked with Diane in the 1980s as a partner in the Tri-County Youth Services Consortium and there is no doubt in my mind or in the mind of anyone who met her that she was literally born to do the work she did. Children on the streets, families of children on the streets, teen moms and the babies of teen moms—thousands have been impacted forever by the work she did and by the commitment she modeled for us all to never give up trying. Thank you Diane for being you and for sharing with us all.”

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