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Oct 26, 2016

​Poem by Adam Ramey

Once upon a time, in a land far away

There was a village of compassionate people who gave a troubled little seed a place to grow and stay.

At once, the seed who didn’t know what to say

Became angry and sad, so he pushed people away.

“Stay away” he cried.

“I am a monster, a monster. No one can help me, for many have tried.”

But the village of people never once swayed nor fret

For they wished to instill in him values in which they had set.

For a long time the seed never grew

For the seed had a dark secret, he thought no one knew.

The seed had hurt a lot of people in his short little life

So he hid from it, and hid from strife.

However, a life without strife was one in which the seed did not earn.

So deep inside his dark secret burned.

The seed was afraid of what people might say

If he told them that he was the reason why both of his brothers were taken away.

So he sat and he sat in denial and dismay.

Forever in a cell of his own creation, locked away.

All the while the people would say

We love you, we support you, and there’s nothing you could say to make us go away.

And then one day to no one’s surprise

The little seed sprouted as he apologized

And said he had created a web of lies.

Again and again he cried,

“I’m a monster, I’m a monster see how I’ve lied?”

But the seed, now a sprout could not take out

That being a monster was not what accountability was about.

Slowly, over time the sprout began to grasp

Just what was the sprout’s task.

Lose his selfish ways for the world not a kingdom nor he an heir.

Remove the pain from those he hurt for it is not their burden to bear.

A daunting task to ask of me

But one he knew he must complete to grow into an honorable tree.

Finally the true trials and tribulations began

But again and again he refused the call and ran

Again and again he ran

Because he refused to believe the two words I CAN.

Inch by inch the sprout grew

Blossoming into a small tree

That previously no one knew.

But while he was growing he forgot to say

Something to those who helped him on his way.

So he asked me to do this, something very important to him.

All at once and on a whim

Those who have stayed all along the way

Will be in his heart every single day.

For all those who guided

In all he does, of you he will be reminded.

For those who showered him in love

It will be respected just as much as if it came from some place above.

To you who said what he needed to hear

Don’t worry, all you said will be repeated back to someone else’s ear.

For those who helped him to see

You always be anything but just a memory.

Lastly, there was something I have not said yet.

He asked me to tell you not to ever fret

Because of all of you many of his goals are now met.

And even though he may seem far away

He made it clear how important it was for me to say

Thank you and I love you to all who nurtured him into the tree he is today.

Cordero, October, 2016

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May 22, 2017
Scholarships Awarded To Our Youth

On May 17th, the Janus Board of Directors, staff and community members honored 15 youth in our programs who were recipients of our scholarship awards. Now in its sixteenth year, the scholarships open the door to education for our youth by helping to pay for school expenses such as tuition, books and rent.

This year’s scholarship recipients are from an array of Janus programs including Insights Teen Parent Program, Imani House, Changes, Annex I, Harry’s Mother and Hope Partnership. Special thanks to Robert Gootee and Moda Health for their support in launching the Scholarship Fund in 2001 and to Joanne Senders—a generous donor who established the Joanne Senders Scholarship Fund.  

Photo: Left to right: Jeremy Ericksen, Thomas Spisla, Christian Ford, Griffin Thomas, Robert Gootee, Gustavo Portillo-Soto, Fariborz Pakseresht, Dennis Morrow and Dalon Murray. Not pictured: Alejandra Hernandez, Nicholas Schafer, Elishah Eduardo Asbaugh, Johnathan Baker, Cayce French, Robert Miller, Agustin Estrada-Vargas, Ezequiel Vasquez, and Bailey Allman.

May 08, 2017
Youth Voices—In Their Own Words

My experience at Cordero House was one of the most significant events to have happened to me. Let me start with a background of who I am. I came from a small village in the countryside of El Salvador. At a young age, I learned to be independent, going to school and helping with the daily chores. I moved to the city for a very brief moment before flying to the U.S. At first, I felt strange and overwhelmed with everyone and everything around me. As time went by, I found myself in a state of confusion. Alone, I had no one to turn to ask for help. Instead, I did things that to this day I regret. Such events led to me spending time in a youth corrections facility.

May 01, 2017
Employee Spotlight—Angie Corll

Angie knows what it feels like to run away. She did it for years, running away from abusive and neglectful homes, opting for freedom and danger of the streets over security. This life on the run led her down many dark paths for years until she became the kid that no one wanted to take in. Finally, in 1993, with the help of her probation officer, she entered a Janus residential program. That was a turning point. Says Angie, “I was blessed to have been given a second chance.” Now she works as a Youth Care Specialist at our Oak Grove shelter in SW Washington, helping youth who are facing similar life crisis as she did. We talked to Angie to find out how her experiences has prepared her to serve our youth.

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