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November 25th

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Upbring BeREAL Program Earns Special Recognition from Texas Network of Youth Services

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Upbring accepted the Steve Wick Innovation Program Award for its BeREAL program during the annual Texas Network of Youth Services (TNOYS) conference. (L-R) Stephanie Bernal, BeREAL caseworker; LaNisha Bell, BeREAL caseworker; Lacy Carr, BeREAL program director; Krystale Bezio, Upbring senior vice president of program operations; Christine Gendron; TNOYS executive director; and John Bracken of the TNOYS board of directors.

Selena Sauceda just earned her driver’s license and got a car so she can get to work. She also has her own apartment, no curfew and the freedom to host guests anytime she wants!

What might seem like common, unremarkable steps on the path to adulthood to most of us are milestones to young people like Selena who age out of foster care. Many of these brave young people have no family, no home and no support system. The Upbring BeREAL program walks alongside them as they grow into independent, successful adults.

Upbring was honored to accept the Steve Wick Innovative Program Award for BeREAL during the TNOYS annual conference. Selena and her sister Isabel were on hand to share how BeREAL has impacted their lives.

BeREAL sets young people up for success by providing housing, food and clothing. But that is just the beginning.

BeREAL participants learn critical life skills such as managing their finances, shopping for groceries and cooking nutritious meals. They also connect with caring adults who guide them as they achieve their employment and education goals.

Growing up in group homes, Isabel has embraced the opportunity to take ownership of her life with support from her BeREAL caseworker, LaNisha Bell. By working and going to college, Isabel is tapping into her talents and exploring her dreams.

“Both of these girls are discovering themselves, and that’s a beautiful thing,” LaNisha said. “Because of the support they get through this program, Selena and Isabel have the freedom to discover their passions. I’m so proud of both of them.”

These are just two of many success stories from the Upbring BeREAL program. Click here to read how BeREAL helped one young man build a foundation for stability.

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