VOLUME 26, ISSUE 98 WINTER 2009 “YOU MADE CHRISTMAS BETTER” Damascus us, but you know we have For most of us, Christmas blankets, sheets and tow- Community Church is been through a lot and some is a fun time. We’re with els and also fun items like honored each year have not been with our fami- people we enjoy, we eat food sports equipment, games, to participate in lies in a long time. Youth Guidance we enjoy, we receive gifts we DVD’s, and movie tickets. enjoy. We don’t think of Sam: You have given me These are things that the Association’s hope and joy from your gift. Up a Life Christmas as being a bad kids will benefit from experience; but for many of Thank you for lighting up my throughout the year, and program. This year life with your thoughtfulness. God gave us an the kids in our programs, it is we are so grateful. Steve: Thank you for the gift opportunity to a sad and lonely time. It is a This year, we were also card. I love it! Now I can go involve both our reminder that they are away blessed to receive three Christmas shopping for the church body and the from their families and they rest of my family. Thank you very special gifts: a Bow- students of our don’t know when, if ever, for giving me a Christmas. flex exercise machine for Damascus Christian they will be with them again. Joey: I want to thank you for our Charis Ridge Program High School in this It is a reminder that their the sweatshirt. It means a and a big-screen TV and all rewarding ministry futures are uncertain. lot to me. Thanks for caring. It -wood foosball table for that is meeting the As I read the thank you makes me feel better. Son Village. The Bowflex is real needs of hurting notes the kids wrote this Ellis: Thank you for spending perfect for our setting, and kids in our ‘Judea year, I was struck by how the time, effort, and money the boys started using it and Samaria.’ It is many of our young people to help us have a better immediately. They were so our joy to join with commented on the fact that Christmas. Our holiday spirit excited. Needless to say, YGA, and we look was buoyed knowing that receiving the gifts and notes the big screen TV was also forward to a people out there care about through “Light Up A Life” did a BIG hit! And there is a growing partnership us. in the future.” make Christmas better for Chris: Thank you very much special story behind the them; and I thought the best for taking the time to get foosball table. We have a —Andy McClellan way to express our apprecia- staff person named Jeromi, these gifts for us. I think if tion to you for your support everyone was as caring and who started working as a would be to share some of thoughtful as people like you, residential counselor at those comments with you— this world would be a lot Son Village 17 months ago. INSIDE THIS ISSUE: to let you hear directly from better than it is today. From the beginning, Jeromi the kids. People like you YGA WELCOMES 2 Matthew: As for us, we had a make Christmas NEW BOARD MEMBER wonderful Christmas. We a little easier for were really blessed thanks to us guys. WISH LIST 2 people like you who go out of In addition to YOU MADE 2 their way to make sure kids the individual CHRISTMAS BETTER who are in programs can have gifts that were CONT’D something for Christmas. You given, people A VIEW FROM MY made things better for us all, contributed 3 DESK and I just wanted to tell you very practical that I really appreciate it. and needed A LIFE OF SERVICE 3 Roger: I know you don’t know items like ADVOCATE Page 2 YGA WELCOMES NEW BOARD MEMBER in 1997, John completed School Resource Officer swimming competitively in a double degree in for Sam Barlow HS and, hopes of making it into Speech Communication among his other respon- the Olympics. Now he is and Christian Theology at sibilities, is also a Public content to swim and Whitworth College. John Information Officer and have fun with his kids. had an excellent rapport Hostage Negotiator. In When asked why he with the boys at Son asking John about his was interested in serving Village and was soon experience with Youth on the YGA Board, John given case management Guidance, he said that said this: “I appreciate responsibilities, which he loved working at both the fact that the staff became his full-time role Son Village and Charis really value the kids. in 2000. Ridge and that his time The work YGA does with When John decided to at Son Village especially kids is incredible, and I The commitment of pursue police work as helped to prepare him for believe that YGA’s our staff often goes be- the next step in his ca- his current role. mission is what really yond the time of their reer, he continued with In his time outside of sets it apart from other employment with YGA, as YGA on a part-time basis, work, John really enjoys programs.” We are so is the case with John providing essential con- spending time with his pleased to welcome John Rasmussen, our newest sultation and training for family. John and his to the YGA Board and are Board member. John what was then our new- wife, Kelly, have been confident that he will was born and raised in est program, Charis married 11 years and play a significant role in the East Bay area of Cali- Ridge. John has been have two great kids, with helping move the organi- fornia. Before coming on with the Gresham Police a third on the way. Earlier zation toward achieving staff as a Residential Department now for over in his life, John spent a its mission. Counselor at Son Village three years. He is the great deal of his free time YOU MADE CHRISTMAS BETTER, CONT’D WE WISH WE HAD A . . . has considered his position a “mission” as well as a job. Jeromi has a huge heart for the kids he works YGA is feeling the economic pinch, just as you probably are. In with, and his family immediately became interested in spite of that, we were amazed by the generosity of the many what Jeromi was doing. Last fall they invited some of people who gave to YGA during the holidays. We were thrilled the boys to their home for a “raclette (which is a spe- by the many Christmas gifts that were provided for the kids in cial cheese from France) dinner.” The boys had a our programs and for the Bowflex machine, foosball table and great time. As Christmas approached, Jeromi’s family talked about wanting to do something special for the big screen TV which they will enjoy for years to come. boys at Son Village, and they all decided to go to- Below are some of the things still on our wish list. If you or gether to purchase a new foosball table. But it wasn’t someone you know would be interested in donating any of just Jeromi’s parents. It was siblings, grandparents, these items to YGA, please contact our office (503) 234-0085. aunts and uncles. It spoke volumes to the kids that Jeromi’s whole family would do this for them. They even brought the foosball table to the Center and • Four-wheel drive tractor (capable of moving snow) spent three hours with the boys putting it together. • One or two 5 KW (or larger) generators to provide That is really the essence of what “Light Up A Life” emergency backup power is all about. People, like you, give to help meet the • Pick-up truck to be used as a maintenance vehicle real needs of these kids; but in that simple gesture of kindness, you give much more—you give a message of • Scissors lift for a variety of maintenance projects love and of hope, and that not only makes Christmas better for them, it can make the future better, too. VOLUME 26, ISSUE 98 Page 3 THE VIEW FROM MY DESK Snow in our part work on snow and ice- give of themselves. of Oregon is usually a hit covered roadways. It Over three feet of and run event. Predic- changed holiday visit snow fell at our Son tions of it generate high plans for our residents. It Village location, necessi- hopes in school children, even forced the postpone- tating an immense excitement and hype on ment of our staff Christ- amount of work on the the news programs, and mas party. grounds. Even with so perhaps a little anxiety It took a tremen- many boys helping out, for people worried about dous amount of commit- we weren’t able to keep up getting to work or what ment and effort on the with the shoveling and they’ll do if school is can- part of our staff to get to had to bring in a plow Martin Lowen, celled. Such predictions work. Some were forced to three times to dig out the Executive Director usually result in a brief Youth Guidance Association stay at work much longer driveway and parking or slushy appearance on than planned to fill in for areas. One flat roof also the higher hills. But this snow to fall this winter, those who were stranded. had to be cleared to lessen year has been different, I’m confident that even if Others volunteered to fill the weight. and we are still feeling it does, our staff will con- in where needed, and all When the snow the impact. tinue to demonstrate their did it with a positive atti- finally did start melting It started before tude and a desire to see and sliding off the roofs, dedication to the mission Christmas. Cold weather that the kids we work the gutters came down of this agency. combined with lots of with were well taken care with it. The resulting moisture left our staff of. We are very blessed as damage at Son Village scrambling and impro- an agency with an amazing will exceed $3,000. While vising ways to get to staff who continuously nobody is wanting more A LIFETIME OF SERVICE It was with great 1969, spoke of the source of encourage- pleasure and gratitude model of leadership ment in difficult situa- that the YGA Board hon- Dave has provided tions. His creative think- ored long-time member, throughout the years. ing and initiative have David Culver, for over 40 From the beginning, brought about changes years of service to Youth Dave has shown that that have served the Guidance. Leroy Moody, he truly has a heart for organization very well. current Board Chair, troubled kids. When Most of all, presented Dave with a Youth Guidance was countless young lives plaque granting him formed, Dave actually have been impacted be- honorary lifetime mem- took a year off from work cause of the leadership bership. to assist in the start up. Dave has provided. We Dick Smith, who It has been that cannot thank him became the Executive kind of commitment that enough for his years of Director when the Youth has marked Dave’s dedicated service and Guidance division of service. He has been a the tremendous contri- Dave Culver, recognized for 40 years of service to YGA. Portland Youth for Christ source of wisdom in bution he has made to was established in challenging times and a this organization. Non Profit Organization US Postage PAID Permit No 5666 BUILDING COMMUNITIES Portland , OR OF HOPE Youth Guidance Association 2730 NE Flanders Portland, OR 97232 Phone: 503 234-0085 CHANGE SERVICE REQUESTED OUR MISSION OUR PEOPLE BOARD OF REFERENCE To help youth experience healing and develop Martin Lowen Honorable Mark Hatfield the motivation, responsibility, stable values Executive Director U.S. Senator Oregon (Retired) and skills to make successful choices in life. Shirley Heck Dr. Ron Post OUR PURPOSE Program Administrator Founder of NW Medical Teams International To meet the physical, social, emotional and spiritual needs of youth and their families Cecilia Ringsage Dr. Pamela Reeve through residential treatment, counseling, Charis Ridge Program Director Multnomah Bible College and Seminary advocacy, and support services. Dan Rogers Dick Reiten Son Village Program Director NW Natural Gas OUR PROGRAM YGA currently operates two highly structured Tanya Muirbrook Ron Timpe residential treatment programs for troubled Girls’ Program Director Standard Insurance of Oregon adolescents, Son Village and Charis Ridge. Larry Guisinger These programs emphasize self-discipline, Facilities Manager personal responsibility and respect. YGA also has a strong commitment to working with the families of the youth in its care. VISIT OUR WEB SITE AT WWW.YGAPDX.ORG YOUTH GUIDANCE ASSOCIATION IS A NON-PROFIT AGENCY, 501(C)(3), AND ALL CONTRIBUTIONS ARE TAX DEDUCTIBLE FOR THOSE WHO ITEMIZE THEIR FEDERAL TAXES. YGA IS LICENSED BY THE STATE OF OREGON AND IS A MEMBER OF THE OREGON ALLIANCE OF CHILDREN’S PROGRAMS.
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