Thursday, August 30, 2007

YOU Can Help Youth In Crisis!

This post is to raise money for a very worthy cause- helping young people who are going through upheaval in their lives. The DreamTree Project, in Taos, New Mexico, provides a safe, structured place to live for up to 16 homeless youth, ages 16 to 24. These youth are helped to regain balance in their lives, become empowered through personal growth, and learn life skills they will need to make it on their own. Youth can live at DreamTree for up to two years, while healing from the past, and preparing for the future.

Now the DreamTree Project is getting ready to open 'The Tree House', which will be an emergency youth shelter for kids ages 13 to 17, who are in crisis at home. Soon, rather than running away to the streets or other dangerous situations, these young people will be able to come to The Tree House. They'll have a safe place to stay for up to 14 days, while receiving services and advocacy to improve their home situations. There's a great need for this in Taos. In spite of the amazing beauty of this area, poverty and domestic violence are high, and it is often the children who suffer.

On September 9th, the 2nd annual Walkathon fundraiser will be held in Taos, to raise money for The Tree House. You can read about the event HERE. If you live near Taos, please come join us! In conjunction with the Walkathon, friends & supporters of DreamTree are raising money, and so I'm asking my blog readers for donations, all of which will go to support the opening of The Tree House. Last year's Walkathon raised $29,000. This year we hope to raise even more. Also last year, generous friends of DreamTree provided funding to purchase the house that is being turned into The Tree House.

DreamTree Youth Lead Last Year's Walkathon

If your heart is telling you to help, please click on the orange ChipIn button in the box below, and you can leave a donation through PayPal. I'll be collecting these donations, and then passing them on to DreamTree on the day of the Walkathon, September 9th. If you'd like a tax deductible receipt for your donation, please let me know, and I'll see that one is sent to you.

(My personal fundaiser for DreamTree has now ended, with $360 raised. If you would still like to give a donation, to help support DreamTree, you can do so by clicking here HERE . Thanks!)

If you have any questions about DreamTree Project, or The Tree House, please ask! DreamTree Project is a non-profit organization, funded entirely by grants and donations, so fund raisers like this are vital to keeping it
alive. I thank you all in advance for your generosity, whether you're able to contribute $1 or $100, it is GREATLY appreciated, and will go to make positive changes in a child's life.

In closing, I'd like to leave you with a poem I wrote about my little sister, Temple, back in 2002, when I first became familiar with the DreamTree Project. I believe that if there had been a place like DreamTree for Temple to have gone to when she was a teenager it might have changed the course of her life, and she might still be alive today. That is the potential impact programs such as DreamTree can have on a troubled young person's life.


When I was eleven and you were six,
you didn't believe the grown-ups,
when they told you that Dad was dead.
But he was, he was (just like Mom).
You believed it when I told you.

You believed me, when you were little.

When did you stop believing me?

Was it when you were 15,
and were thrown out of the house,

unwanted again, and on your own?

Or was it a year or so later,

when I found you cowering in my kitchen,

waving around that butcher knife,
in a panic of fear,
because your coke dealer

had just tried to rape you?

Did you believe me
when I visited you
in the state mental hospital
(scary, scary, scary),

where they'd put you
when you'd said you would kill yourself?

I know you didn't believe me
when you drank that last bottle of vodka,

and then sliced the razor up your arm,

to let the blood flow out.

But maybe NOW you believe me again,
now that you are dead.
Maybe now you've found peace.

Because I tell you:

There IS peace,

and there IS love,

and there IS joy.
And I hope you believe me now.

Some Views From DreamTree


Peg said...

I'm so sorry about your sister.

awannabe said...

interesting choice of colors...

Jaya said...

Thanks, AskALesbian... I
appreciate your kind comment.

Awannabe- I'm guessing you are
referring to the colors in the
photos of DreamTree? There is
a pretty big range of colors on
the walls there! Most of the
offices are different colors,
and all the kids' bedrooms in
the main house are different
colors too. They all have
different 'feels' to them too.

Jaya said...

I'd like to THANK THANK THANK those who have already contributed to this fund raiser, and also remind everyone reading this that you don't have to make a BIG contribution to really be helpful. If 100 people contributed just $5 or $10, it would be another $500 - $1,000 for the kids.

Linasolopoesie said...


Nita said...

You have a very interesting topic here. Keep it up.

By the way, thanks for stopping by at my blog :) Really appreciate it.

Anonymous said...

I was really by that poem which you have written for your beloved sister!!! I also thank those who have contributed to this fund raiser program....All the best.

Jaya said...

Thanks for stopping by, SoloPoesie, Nita, and Lais, and for your supportive comments - it's appreciated!

Lais, I was just over at your blog, reading
your post about search engines threatening
our privacy. Very interesting!

Angela Chen Shui, "The Soul Alignment Coach" said...


As I said over at Digg, excellent project, excellent post. Blessings with this and all that you're undertaking... and Love your blog...