Congratulations to Clifford, our April Student of the Month!

At 7 years old, Clifford experienced a traumatic loss with the passing of his mom. Added to this loss was the loss of a stable home environment. The weight of these changes is something Clifford carried with him before coming to Rawhide. He made some poor decisions that led him here, but this isn’t where his story ends.

“Before coming to Rawhide, I didn’t care about anything,” said Clifford. “I didn’t care if I lived or died, I didn’t care about other people or myself. After being here for 6 months, I now wake up and say to myself ‘you have things to do today.’”

Clifford’s favorite part of Rawhide is simple: The opportunity. “In other placements, I didn’t have the chance to receive consistent therapy, be cared for by well-trained staff, and have all of the things I need to do well,” said Clifford.

Clifford is in the 10th grade at Starr Academy and enjoys working on his art and taking part in the culinary arts job training program at Rawhide. In fact, he was the first student to get 100% on the Serv-Safe exam!

“I am confident and comfortable with who I am as a person now,” said Clifford. “I’ve learned that what I think of me matters more than what others think of me. I now live for me and what I need and what I think. I want to be successful. I realize that now is the time I need to turn it around.”

When he leaves here, Clifford plans to take everything he learned with him — every coping skill, all of his experiences, and all of the progress he has made.

“The way I lived here is the way I want to live the rest of my life,” said Clifford. “I want to be remembered for the way I made people feel, my personality, and as a positive influence to others.”

In the future, Clifford plans to graduate from high school near the top of his class, go to college and becoming a traveling nurse.

“Thank you to all of the donors,” said Clifford.