Overcoming the odds: Meet Desirae

Meet Desirae now:  a local to East Austin and Austin Community College student, studying to become a Juvenile Defense Attorney. Desirae is married to her high school sweetheart and is the proud owner of a new car. When she’s not in school, Desirae works for a cable/internet company and was recently promoted.

With a constant smile on her face, Desirae exudes positivity and stoicism; but, she will be the first to tell you, her path to happiness was not a smooth one. A former foster youth, Desirae went through her childhood angry and restless. When she eventually aged out of care, Desirae was ill-equipped to quickly make the transition into adulthood, further stifling her success with debt and an unsustainable working-student lifestyle.

A testament to her grit and resilience, Desirae wasn’t content to continue down the path that life had set out for her. She approached LifeWorks, and through our counseling services and financial assistance, Desirae was able to overcome her emotional and financial barriers to success.

Desirae’s story is just one of many examples of the resilience, determination, and potential that some of our community’s most vulnerable youth exhibit regularly. Often painted as the victim, these foster youth grow to become some of the strongest individuals I know. But their track to success is a precarious one, and for every success story, there are too many others that go astray. Though their resilience is inspiring, these foster youth are still children, and they need a community of support, guidance, resources and encouragement to grow into happy and healthy adults.

Watch Desirae’s story to learn more about how community programs and services like LifeWorks can give foster youth the extra boost they need to thrive.