Teen Gets Life Back on Track with CG Support

After graduating from high school Phyllis was forced to leave her job and her friends behind when she and her mother moved. The 17-year-old resented her mother’s decision, pushing their already rocky relationship to breakpoint. What was once arguing escalated to intense physical encounters. “If I went home, we would get in a fight and it would be dangerous.” Phyllis recalls.

Phyllis’ mother told her to leave, forcing the teen to fend for herself. A friend offered Phyllis a place to stay, where she resided for only a few days. Knowing that Phyllis’ stay would be indefinite, her friend introduced her to Common Ground.

Phyllis started out at Sanctuary, a safe haven for youth ages 10 to 17, where she stayed for the maximum two weeks, receiving shelter, counseling and support. After Sanctuary, Phyllis moved to the agency’s A Step Forward program, an 18-month, transitional living shelter.

Shortly after moving into the program, Phyllis turned 18 and secured a job. She is now a local store manager and responsible for training employees. Her supervisory role at work keeps her busy working 30 hours per week. She is also enrolled at a community college.

Phyllis has shared her story with other youth who are inspired by her story. They have told her that with her energy and dynamic personality should become an actress. Although she has what it takes to capture an audience, her heart lies with helping others. “I want to be a social worker; I want to help kids.”

Phyllis has become a responsible, goal-oriented individual. She enjoys being independent and making her own decisions while receiving support and guidance from Common Ground.