"FareStart does change lives"

November 20, 2018

FareStart Youth Programs, FareStart does change livesJess was 17 when she had to make a choice. Her mother had recently passed away and her father struggled with alcohol abuse. So, she stayed with friends moving from couch to couch while still trying to graduate from high school.

“My father made me feel like I was nothing,” she said. “I couldn’t stay there. It wasn’t a safe place for me.”

She found different support services while she was moving from place to place and she learned about the Youth Barista Program - a partnership between FareStart and YouthCare.

[Support students like Jess]

“They teach you more than just coffee,” she said. “I learned customer service, soft skills and food preparation. It’s hands on and even though it was challenging, I knew I could do it. They were incredibly supportive. It was warm and caring and giving. Throughout the entire program, they wanted me to be able to be in a better place than I was.”

After finishing the program, Jess works full-time, has her own apartment and finished a degree at a vocational school.

“FareStart does change lives,” she said. “I was able to learn skills that propelled me in my life. I went to school. I have a steady income. The support I got like resources, mental health and shelter helped me stay safe and stay involved in life. I have a future now.”