Over the last few weeks, we shared updates from three of our former clients, Porschea, Gage and Alexis. Like so many of our clients, they each experienced trauma and faced significant hardships. Their inspiring stories showcase what can happen when hope takes flight.

Porschea, former client and 4th Annual Sunset Sip speaker, relied on hope and faith to heal from the trauma of being a victim of domestic violence, losing loved ones and being abandoned. Now, as a social worker, Porschea is living out her passion. She helps individuals who are hopeless get on the path to healing and recovery.

Former client and 5th Annual Sunset Sip speaker, Gage, was bullied in school because he was different. Now, as an incoming high school student he uses the skills his former therapist taught him to remain hopeful and optimistic. He celebrates individuality, enjoys playing baseball with his teammates and is interested in studying business in college.

Alexis, another former client and singer at the 3rd Annual Sunset Sip, once doubted herself and her abilities because of bullying. Today, with blossomed confidence, she proudly uses her voice, talents and interests to help others, especially children, smile and live happier lives. She hopes to uplift her community by spreading positive messages about girl empowerment and ending bullying.

This year, we will hear from another former client of The Guidance Center, Rafael. Ahead of next week’s event, Rafael’s former therapist, Cynthia Sedillo-Artiaga, reflected on Rafael’s journey.

Two and a half years ago, Rafael came to The Guidance Center with his mom, unaware of what was to come. Over the last two years, Cynthia has seen tremendous growth in Rafael. She attributes most of his success to his commitment and desire to get better. “I simply gave him tools and showed him healthier ways to cope,” says Cynthia. “He applied them and worked to get better.” She often reminds him of his bravery and how much he has overcome.

“Without hope there is nothing, but one grain of hope can change the direction of someone’s life,” Cynthia shared.

Help us celebrate hope and join us at this year’s Sunset Sip. Your participation will help us provide hope and mental health treatment to our community’s most disadvantaged children and their families struggling with mental illness and abuse.