Author: Vivian Mattila Walikainen

Lilly’s Story & Local Teen Parent Resources

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Lilly K. knows only too well the ups and downs of being a pregnant homeless teen. Today she is in a safe place, studying to be an EMT, with a healthy toddler at her side, but it was only a short time ago that she felt all alone and completely desperate. Each and every parent… Read More

Moms’ Groups: Doing Life Together

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“We believe in the simple but revolutionary idea that remarkable things happen when moms come together,” informs the website for MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers), an international moms’ group with local chapters found all over the world. Indeed, many local mothers (both novice and experienced) find places of meaningful connections with other moms through local support… Read More

Connect Battle Ground: Transforming Young Lives through Relationship

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Being a teenager is hard. And today’s world is all the more difficult for teens to navigate when they have been affected and disadvantaged by childhood trauma, neglect and abuse. In response to youth suicides and depression specifically in Battle Ground youth in recent years, community leaders looked for solutions by digging deeper into the… Read More

Finding a Lifetime Friend through Pet Adoption

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“Who could resist those fluffy bundles of joy?” asks Diane Stevens of Furry Friends in Vancouver, a nonprofit, no-kill, cat adoption agency. Who indeed? Fluffy kittens are definitely one of the agency’s most popular adopted pets, affirms Stevens. Denise Barr of Humane Society for Southwest Washington echoes the affection, “Expect your heart to never be… Read More

Riding for a Lifetime: Equine Therapy

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“Rehabilitation, or fixing, Neva isn’t our goal,” says Neva’s mother, Alicia. “We build on the strengths and gifts that she has, what she’s interested in—just like any other 14-year-old.” After a reflective pause, she continues, “And one of those interests and strengths is riding, just like I had when I was a kid. For us,… Read More