Trevor volunteers at Youth Unlimited Young Guns Garage program in Surrey, where he is further developing his mechanics skills and mentoring younger youth. / Submitted Photo

At-risk, not without hope

Trevor’s story shows resiliency coupled with support can yield beautiful outcomes

One of Trevor’s earliest memories is being ripped from his mother’s arms and placed into foster care. While his mom was loving, she was also addicted to drugs and lacked the resources to care for her children.

These traumas inevitably led to significant mental health challenges, but despite that, today Trevor is an outgoing, compassionate 25-year-old, with a zeal for life and a future in mechanics.

A major influence in Trevor’s success is local Youth Unlimited youth worker, Calvin Williams, a faithful mentor of Trevor’s since he was 10.

When Trevor’s mom and grandma were no longer able to care for the four children, Trevor’s younger half-siblings were sent to live with their dad, while 10-year old Trevor was alone in foster care.

For the first few months, his mother visited once a week. But as time passed, the visits lessened.

“Eventually the only way I could see my mom was whenever I’d walk the three hours to her house,” he says. “I never got to see my siblings.”

As Trevor’s family connections weakened, his desperation for guidance and support grew.

In that same year, Calvin and Trevor met at a youth event. Calvin, whose main role is to serve at the Mission Youth House (MY House) became a constant in Trevor’s life.

From that point on, the two were meeting regularly. Calvin’s care, attention and faithful commitment were completely new to Trevor.

“Calvin was so supporting and consistent,” says Trevor. “He was always a listening ear, offering practical support and guidance.”

Things weren’t easy for Trevor. There was a period of time when he was inappropriately housed in a run-down camper at the back of his foster care parents’ property.

“Foster care was an awful experience,” says Trevor. “I don’t want it for anybody.”

Once out of foster care, Trevor experienced episodic homelessness.

“When I was 14, I was diagnosed with PTSD, separation anxiety, bipolar disorder and abandonment issues,” he says. “There wasn’t much the school could do then, but Calvin really stepped up to help me in my journey.”

The bond continued as Trevor entered his 20s, became a father, and participated in family meals and counselling at MY House.

“After all these 15 years, Calvin is the only support worker who has pretty much filled every role of counsellor and friend,” Trevor says admiringly. “But the ultimate role he’s filled is a father. To this day he still continues to help me out so much.”

Today, Trevor volunteers at Youth Unlimited Young Guns Garage program in Surrey, where he is further developing his mechanics skills and mentoring younger youth.

MY House is a community collaborative that provides a variety of care for all youth. It is run by a team that includes Youth Unlimited, Mission Community Services, Fraser House, Hope Central, Matsqui-Abbotsford Impact, City of Mission, SD75, MCFD and Xyolhemeylh.

Youth Unlimited supports all youth, with a particular focus on at-risk and vulnerable youth. For more, visit www.youthunlimited.com.

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