This is such a sweet post — I am giving you a taste then you can go to see her blog to finish:
Friday, June 20, 2014
Now that school’s out, every time I leave my apartment I’m accosted by a kid who wants to do art with me. I offer an art class every week for kids in the Bridge Meadows neighborhood. For a few kids, I also have weekly one on one time to work on art and books and stories. But it’s not quite enough now that summer is here.
I know I’ve had this opportunity to become popular with kids because of my unique living situation here at Bridge Meadows. We are an intentional community organized to support families adopting 3 or more children out of the foster care system. On our city block in Portland, Oregon, we have 9 single family homes, and apartments for seniors who provide support for the families. We seniors get a sense of purpose; the children get a sense of permanence. There are about 30 kids under the age of 16 here.
In any other neighborhood, I might not know any of them, but here, I am welcome to form bonds with all of them. Their parents know I’ve been vetted — I’ve passed a criminal background check and gotten training on how to work with children with challenging backgrounds. I’ve been here over 2 years now and I’ve seen children grow from being distrustful and anxious to being playful and creative. It’s an amazing transformation and I feel so blessed to help open creative channels for them. (Continue to finish!)