Gebrelle finds understanding and a new path at Holy Cross

by | Oct 23, 2019 | Community Services

Gebrelle had dropped out of the eighth grade and felt like he was nothing more than a lost cause.

“I was doing a bunch of stuff I wasn’t supposed to do,” admitted the teen, who struggled in school and had fallen behind.

Gebrelle, who thought he never had a chance, said he found one when he arrived at Holy Cross Services. The organization offered him something so many teens in troubled situations say they need: understanding.

“There’s people here that I can relate to,” he said. “They’ve been through stuff that I did.”

Seeing others who had seized the second chance given to them at Holy Cross, Gebrelle set himself on a new path led by positive role models.

“They found solutions. And the solutions they found I tried.” He admitted those solutions didn’t always work, but staff never gave up on him.

Life-long skills

Through group sessions and support Gebrelle learned coping skills and how to make level-headed decisions. Since coming to Holy Cross, he has learned how to deal with a difficult situation “right then and there.” Gebrelle is most proud of his dramatic improvement in school grades, having completed seven school credits since arriving at Holy Cross.

Once he arrived, Gebrelle got a chance to do some of the things he’d missed out on as a teen, such as taking his driver’s license exam, going camping and playing sports. While he said those things were fun, he’s most grateful for the tools Holy Cross has given him. He now knows he can weigh the pros and cons of a situation and consider the consequences of his actions. It’s this solid base that Gebrelle said has given him the confidence to succeed.

“You don’t go through life without having problems,” he said. “And they teach you how to deal with them, so it won’t happen again.”

Since 1948, we’ve been helping youths in foster care trying to help them get on the right track by bringing them hope, promoting positive change and helping them live healthy and productive lives. If you would like to make a donation to help children like Gebrelle that Holy Cross helps every day just go to

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HCS specializes in empowerment and trauma recovery for children and families engaged in the child welfare system and supporting our neighbors to end their episodes of homelessness. Although these areas of service have significant intersection, we operate our programs through three functional arms:

  • Division of Family-Based Care and Youth Transition
  • Division of Residential Care and Family Healing
  • Division of Housing and Community Advocacy

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Holy Cross Services is a non-profit 501(c)3 corporation

EIN #38-1368326