Libby is preparing for her move to Rights of Passage after a 4-month long stay in our Crisis Program. When youth leave the Crisis Program for ROP, it is always something to celebrate. Libby’s move, however, feels particularly momentous. At the beginning of her stay, Libby struggled with most of the daily expectations of our program. Libby particularly struggled to communicate with her youth workers, at times avoiding us or making lots of inappropriate jokes when we were trying to work on tasks alongside her. At times, it seemed that every time we made a step forward with Libby it was followed directly by two steps back.
There were days I wondered if we would ever be able to form a positive relationship with her. As a team, we continued to relationship build with Libby and kept hope that in time things would improve. As Libby’s stay went on, we began to slowly find some common ground over the use of humor and appropriate and respectful jokes in our interactions. Libby began to talk more and more about what she was learning about boundaries in relationships due to her stay in the Crisis Program.
Soon enough, Libby received her acceptance to ROP and we began to prepare for her transition to a new program. Libby and I had the opportunity to formally say good-bye. It was in this conversation that I could see more than ever how far Libby had come in her time spent with us. Libby expressed her gratitude for the support she had received. Libby and I were able to talk together about how far she had come due to all her hard work. It is moments like these that are so fulfilling for me as a youth worker, moments where all the work we do in bits and pieces shines through in the growth of our youth.