My name is Jasmine Benton. I am a 18 year old teenCEO and I am the owner of Precious Designs. I am a certified 2016 Inspire Youth STEM Entrepreneur. I am also certified in Interior Design and Home Styling. I would like to thank all the volunteers who have joined us today.. I also want to thank the board for being supportive through this event.
Imagine, your living with your mom. She’s your closet confidant You go to the movies together. She tutors you. She helps you with your friends. Shes your best friend. You’re very close. But one day your mom dies in a car accident while you were at school. Your family members, don’t want to take you in. So your forced to enter the foster system. You live in multiple families who only “take” care of you because of the check you bring them. You don’t feel loved. You feel used. That is Jerry. He’s 13 years old.
Imagine having a parent who was into drugs and died of an overdose. She has two daughters who are labeled as the drug addicts kids. When one sister is labeled as troubled when she stands up for being neglected. (Which is a form of child abuse). The other sister gets abused and sexually assaulted by her foster father for standing up for herself.
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this look after orphans and widows in their [time of] distress…
Every year almost 30,000age out the foster system. When they turn 18 years old they are completely alone. They have to:
- Find a place to live,
- make and manage money
- Buy Clothes and food
- Try to continue their education
60% of young men who age out of the system are legally emancipated have convicted of a crime.
20,000 young people whom have aged out have failed to be reunited to complete family.
Unfortunately, these kids are labeled as “bad” kids. Christina Remlin, counsel for children’s rights said, “They group of kids and teenagers who are looked down on and are [thought of] as trouble, for an unfair. “
Most of their peers have their parents or gaurdians to take care of them Research says they don’t know what to do or where to go after aging out.
437,500 children in Americas foster care system, who risk being incarcerated. One quarter of foster care alumni will become involved with the criminal justice system with 2 years of leaving foster care. 7 out 10 girls who age out are pregnant by 21. 25% of students who age out have Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (Disease). 20% of children who age out are instantly homeless. Less than 3% of kids who age out earn a college degree.
Precious designs is a company I have owned since I was 11 years old. One of the biggest dreams we’ve had is to design orphanages to give them a better home. However, we realized orphans who age out will not have a home. They will not have anything. Our solution to this is to create a tiny-house community for Orphans who age out of the system.
Not only will we build a tiny house community for them but we will give them:
~ A Guarded community
~ Scholarships to go to (Community College)
~ Stipends for food and other necessities.
7 out of 10 kids want to pursue college but there are not a lot of opportunities for students. 6% of them attend an institution. I’d only 50% of the 6% will graduate with a degree. For this reason orphans do not have hope that they can go to college and have successful futures.
So what do we do next? Next we would like to offer anyone that opportunity to volunteer their time to help us with this project. We are happy to have people help us with advertisement, design, Administration, and structure. Whatever you want to help us with, we will gladly accept you. One thing we need next, besides volunteers is donations. These orphans have nothing. The only way we know how to help is to give them a safe space to grow, learn, and to go to college. Our goal is to design a neighborhood using our skill-set while helping their community.
I understand this may cause concerns. How can we guarantee success rate? How will aged orphans hear about it? Why does this even matter if they’re still quote on quote orphans?
- I want this to become National. We want every orphanage organization to know this program exists. It would take a while to get all the pieces together but I know that if we have the right help in enough donations we can get there.
- We can’t guarantee success rates because I don’t think any organization is doing exactly what we’re doing. But I believe there will be a lot of success if you do it correctly.
Orphans who age out of the system must fend for themselves during emerging adult years. I’ve come to realize that, they struggle with getting a blanket, or even a toothbrush. They struggle with getting close and making money. All those things are given to kids by their parents. Including myself. They struggle with their image and how people see them. They are jumps into adulthood without any support. But we have the power to change that. We have the power to use our talents and our gifts to bless these orphans with homes and resources to help them with their future. So today, we are asking who wants to help Precious Designs change the future of orphans who age out of the system?