Facing the Hardest Challenges

John’s dad came to Neighborhood House in the spring of 2016 and met Megan, our School Age Coordinator. He immediately started crying, explaining to Megan that he and his three sons were about to be evicted from their home. Their mom had recently left and no one knew where she was.

He just kept saying he needed a place for his boys. Megan immediately got the boys signed-up for the Neighborhood House Summer Program and they’ve been playing and learning ever since!

At first, John, the oldest boy, was very shy, lacked confidence, and was hungry for stability in an ever changing home life. John’s family experienced transition after transition, including homelessness, but were always met with care, compassion, and consistency at Neighborhood House. John’s teachers made an extra effort to include him in every activity while he found his footing in a new environment. They helped booster his confidence by making sure there was always a spot for him in the group and that he was part of every conversation and not left out. Our nutrition program and partnership with KidzEat and the Utah Food Bank also gave John and his family an added layer of security; regular meals at Neighborhood House, free staples like bread to take home, and weekend backpacks with food to help them while our programs are closed.

After a difficult year, John’s family has settled in with his grandparents. He has gained confidence and is taking leadership roles during projects like our Summer Yard Sale, where he managed the cash box and engaged with shoppers. He is more communicative and he feels fully comfortable and safe at Neighborhood House. The affordability of our Children’s Programs allowed John’s dad to enroll all three of his boys at Neighborhood House while he worked hard to get his family back on track. While his dad was figuring out the adult stuff, John was able to make new friends, learn new skills, and transform into the happy, friendly kid his dad always hoped he’d have the chance to be.

Find out more about our Youth Programs.