Getting through the awkward teenage years and into young adulthood is tough for most everyone, even in the relatively small towns and tight-knit communities that make up the Trinity Valley Electric Cooperative service territory.
For the kids, there is still plenty of pressure to make bad choices that can have lifelong consequences. And for teens from troubled homes or with abuse in their pasts, it is a time in life that can shape their entire futures.
For the counselors and volunteers at Still Waters in Kaufman it is the perfect time to intervene and build strong positive character to build on for bright futures.
“With our ‘I Am Enough’ program, we spend four sessions with these kids each year for three years, and talk about healthy relationships, healthy friendships and helping them understand their self-worth,” said Still Waters Director Ketra Hancock. “When you get to them early, they can begin to understand that they do not have to make some of the choices their peers are making, and if they are in a difficult home life, they can step up out of that.”
The I Am Enough curriculum that was developed by Still Waters has proven itself enough that it is being used by other organizations in 11 states and in six foreign countries.
“We go over all kinds of things, from sexting and pornography to building positive relationships,” Hancock said. “You have to understand who you are and have confidence in your own value. Over the course of three years, we really build a relationship and they can come to us with problems instead of reaching out to someone who may actually end up doing them more harm.”
Find more information at stillwatersps23.com.
Other organizations receiving grants included:
No. 1 British Flying Training School Museum, Terrell: $500
Kaufman County Environmental Co-op: $2,000
Forney Education Foundation: $2,000
Keep Athens Beautiful: $3,000
Mabank Area Good Samaritans: $4,000
Wills Point Pilot Club: $3,000
Shining Light Ministry Food Pantry, Wills Point: $5,000