Emily, 18, drove home from class and pulled into her foster mother’s driveway. She stepped out of her new car with a quiet confidence.

 

“This is where Leslie and I live,” Emily said. “She’s my foster mom and my best friend. Living here has been really good for me.”

 

Not long ago, Emily had severe anxiety and depression. She grew up with an abusive father, and her mother had bipolar disorder.

“Our home was like a war zone,” Emily said. “I felt lost. Mom refused to accept the truth about the abuse. She didn’t take her medication, and her moods were all over the place.”

 

When she moved in with Leslie, Emily’s anxiety was crippling. She had flashbacks and emotional breakdowns. She stopped going to school and was scared to leave the house. Leslie and Emily sought information about Youth Villages’ YVLifeSet program.