Though Stephanie has faced more difficulties in her teenage years than others may face in a lifetime, she never fails to greet each person with her effortlessly beautiful smile. Stephanie left her irresponsible mother behind in search of better opportunities and the future she knew she deserved. Growing up with a drug-addicted mother, she realized that her home life was a bad influence and she could not follow the same path. Seeking support, she came to Toussaint Academy San Diego through a school referral. Stephanie took a stance against her mother’s lifestyle and left her family behind, thereby saving herself and gaining a more promising future.
As a TASD resident, Stephanie has participated in many enriching activities. She is also about to graduate from high school, where her focus has been on leadership development through the Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (JROTC). Stephanie’s favorite activity, however, is her work through Outdoor Outreach, which teaches children and teenagers the skills needed to snowboard, rock climb, mountain bike, and surf. Not only does she enjoy these outdoor activities, but she especially appreciates the ability to gain another family outside of TASD.
Overall, Stephanie has appreciated the opportunities she has encountered since coming to TASD. In addition to receiving support from the academy’s staff, she is encouraged to attend school, to participate in a diverse array of activities, and to maintain a high level of involvement in the community. Thanks to TASD, Stephanie feels she has become more confident in her academic career and daily decision-making processes. Stephanie feels that one staff member in particular, Lindsey, provides the love and support that she never felt while living with her mother. Lindsey has been present for each milestone in Stephanie’s life and, according to Stephanie, has made her feel more important than she ever felt before.
In leaving a home that was holding her back, Stephanie courageously faced life’s obstacles and has matured into a positive and determined young woman. She is now preparing to attend a four-year university with a concentration in forensic science/criminology, a goal she will no doubt achieve.
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