We must become the change we want to see in the world. – Mahatma Ghandi

At Casa Valentina, every day we strive to become a positive catalyst for change to help the amazing young people the become an important part of our live. Our mission, to provide at risk youth and youth transitioning from foster care to independent living with affordable housing and various support services, is more crucial now than ever. Check out these statistics:

More foster kids end up in institutions or group homes rather than pre-adoptive or foster homes.
Foster children are two times more likely to suffer from post-traumatic stress than returning veterans
Foster children have a high risk of being hospitalized for serious psychiatric disorders and/or attempted suicide.
As you read these alarming facts, keep in mind that in 2013 alone, 23,000 young adults phased out of the foster care system, over 300 of them resided in Miami Dade County alone. Casa Valentina provides young adults transitioning out of foster care with valuable tools and resources that will help them navigate through society in a productive, healthy way. One of the main ways we do this is by enlisting successful leaders in the community to impart their knowledge and advice to the residents in the program. We would like to acknowledge Noa Pantaleon, of TRX Fitness, and Walter Russ, of First Step Mobile Health & Safety Services, for their contributions to our Life Skills Program.

Noa Pantaleon, Personal Trainer for TRX Fitness

Noa shared his knowledge on fitness and health with our female residents. Our girls got a first-hand work-out experience! His Life Skills course offered insight on the importance of good eating habits and physical activities. They were also taught workout sequences and practical ways to implement fitness into their daily lives.

Walter Russ, Director at First Step Mobile Health & Safety Services

Walter taught a Life Skills course on first aid and CPR. Our residents became CPR certified during his demonstration. His course was informative, hands-on and taught our residents how to perform CPR on adults, children and babies. They were also taught Good Samaritan laws and basic first aid guidelines. These new-found skills empowered and inspired our residents to take action when others are in need.

Casa Valentina would like to once again thank these inspiring figures, as well as the other community leaders, that have provided our residents with skills that will prove essential to their growth and development into adulthood and independent living. Every day, we continue to do our best to create an environment that encourages our youth to reach for their full potential and be a testament to the power of change.

*Statistics from the fosterclub.com