Stories from Oolagen: A.J.’s Story

Posted: August 24, 2016

We are excited to announce that Delisle Youth Services is merging with Oolagen Community Services. To highlight the merger, we will be featuring a series of youth stories from youth who have been impacted the services at Oolagen. By merging, we will have:

  • More resources available
  • More professional development for our staff
  • More knowledge sharing between Oolagen and Delisle
  • More counselling options for youth and families
  • Increased depth to our programming

We are #strongertogether! For more information on the merger, please visit our official announcement: http://www.delisleyouth.org/files/documents/Merger%20Announcement%20Website.pdf

A.J.’s Story

His father left before he was born. His mother had challenges that rendered her unable to take care of him. For his first 9 years, he learned that tantrums and provocative behaviour got him what he wanted. For the rest of his youth and most of his adolescence, he was in and out of foster and group homes—16 different ones and 100 different caregivers over the course of 10 years. Not to mention hospital stays and court appearances.

Then A.J. came to Oolagen, because he said he realized that he had hopes and dreams just like any other kids and he wanted to do whatever he could to help make them come true.

At one of Oolagen’s residential treatment homes, A.J. found people who helped him realized that those hopes and dreams were realistic. They helped him discover his strengths and talents and in his own words, “vowed to do whatever it took to help me achieve my goals”.

With Oolagen’s help and support, A.J. was able to secure and maintain a job, return to school, win an outstanding achievement award and successfully enroll in college.

For as long as he could remember, it was A.J.’s dream to become a journalist.  Oolagen helped A.J. transform that dream into reality. Oolagen believed in A.J.  and their belief and confidence in him helped him turn his life in a positive direction.

A.J. knows what it’s like to feel helpless, lost and alone. But now he also knows what it’s like to be a productive, contributing member of society.


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