The House of the Good Shepherd was nominated by Carrie E. Conte LMSW who writes: We hear all of the time “Oh you work there? Isn’t that where all of the bad kids go?” No, Sir: We provide services to children and families who have strengths that society fails to see. I am writing to nominate the House of the Good Shepherd for the 2013 Community Peacemaker Awards. We provide a safe haven for more than 200 children and families at any given time. All of the children we serve have experienced some sort of traumatic event which has led to an out of home placement. We aim to provide an environment in which these children feel safe, where they can continue to connect with their community, and work to resolve any issues which would hold them back from being a happy and productive member of the community. “ An eye for and eye makes the whole world go blind” -Ghandi. If we practiced an eye for an eye, any mistake made by a child would result in an influx of placements in a juvenile detention center. Instead, we build upon existing strengths and work with non-punitive means for children to learn and grow while also managing services the biological parents need in order for a successful reunification. Our agency is not about producing perfect children or being a consequence to a poor choice, we are about giving children and families an opportunity to start growing again and giving them another chance at life. How do we make the community a more peaceful place?
We assist in bridging the gap between community service providers by facilitating Open Communication, Social Learning, Democracy, Non-Violence, Emotional Intelligence, Social Responsibility, and Growth and Change. As an agency, we work with the family unit as a whole. We pride ourselves on bridging this gap to ensure the best possible environment in which a child may return home to. By helping our children to build safe and secure futures this helps make certain for a more peaceful future. If we are assisting in the development of more positive, resilient, happy, constructive children, there will be a much more peaceful future for the community generation after generation. We do the job that most other people don’t want to do. A job that isn’t funded properly because society fails to see its importance. A job that literally will shape the future of our communities based on the successes and failures we make. We see the good, bad, and the ugly every day. We also see families reunited, children sticking up for other children who are being bullied in school, adoptions, and graduations. We make steps toward a peaceful community everyday with each one of our success stories. “You may say that I’m a dreamer But I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us And the world will live as one.”- John Lennon