Class of 2021

Emily Fischer Profile
Article by Emily Fischer
Communications Administrative Assistant

She's a good kid and she's worked hard to get this far. - Leslie, Foster Mom

The 2020-2021 school year is quickly coming to a close. A year filled with many upheavals, uncertainty, and way more online learning than anyone would have wanted. The end is in sight for students and teachers alike - especially graduating seniors.

Shirley is one of those seniors. She's 18, is in a licensed Gateway Woods foster home, and is greatly anticipating her transition to her very own WillowBridge Apartment upon graduation. There was palpable joy one particular day - joy that merited an email from Shirley's foster mom, Leslie:

"FYI, Shirley's cap and gown came yesterday! I attached a picture because we're excited! She was surprised when she saw the gown had long sleeves and I said, "Have you ever seen a graduation gown without sleeves?!?" and she replied, "I've never seen a graduation gown."

"It was a powerful reminder to me of how much Shirley has accomplished, given the culture she grew up in and the challenges she is facing. I'm so thankful for the roles Gateway Woods and now WillowBridge are playing in Shirley's story. She is far from perfect, but she's a good kid, and she's worked hard to get this far. It's such an encouragement to know that she will have good support when her time in my home is finished. Thank you for all you are doing, and will do, for my girls."

You can't help but look at the picture below and feel the joy bursting out of Shirley. May she be an amazing reminder to all of us, especially during National Foster Care Month, what a little perseverance, a little determination, and a whole lot of the love of Jesus can accomplish. Congratulations, Shirley!

Emily is currently the Communications Administrative Assistant for Gateway Woods. She has also worked as the Office Secretary.