These things dominated Kelsi's* childhood. By her tenth birthday she had lived in 27 places and attended 19 different schools across the country. "I was more of the parent than my mom. I did whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, however I wanted."
When her dad and step-mom gained custody of her it was better, but after such an unstructured lifestyle, Kelsi struggled against their rules, becoming angry and violent. "I never had parent figures growing up, so when I got them, it was like, BOOM."
Her mother's parental rights were terminated. "That felt like another BOOM." Kelsi felt abandoned. She began skipping school and experimenting with drugs, alcohol and sex. When she was 14, her father signed her over to the state. "He didn't want to, but he knew I needed more help than he could give me."
She went to several facilities before coming to The Children's Home0. At first, this was just a different kind of hard, and she even ran away once. "I lived on the streets for just a few days, but I was on drugs... on alcohol. I wasn't in a safe place."
Kelsi decided to come back and at least give The Children's Home a real chance. To her amazement, she discovered something she'd never experienced.
This is the furthest I've gotten anywhere. I'm more open-minded and think more outside-the-box. I'm more willing and able to do things I'm told, plus make decisions that are right for me.
One life-changing opportunity The Children's Home has given Kelsi is the chance to attend Kids Across America the past two summers. KAA is a week-long camp in Missouri for inner-city and at-risk youth. "It was another BOOM, but in a good way."
Kelsi now talks to or sees her dad and step-mom weekly, and they're extremely proud of her. She has moved into the Transitional Living Cottage and, after high school, plans to attend Amarillo College for her basics. Then, she wants to go into the medical field, depending on where God leads her.