You’ll hear more about this later in the newsletter, but I wanted to take the time upfront to thank Zack Follett and the Kuppa Joy crew again for playing host to our AMAZING, first-ever KYJO Open Mic night. As you likely saw on our Facebook, our kids had a great time sharing their stories and talents with our community,

I also want to throw a special THANK YOU to Jermaine Jackson for closing our night off with an uplifting and inspiring message, Isaiah Green for MC’ing, as well as everyone who attended and supported our kids. It’s nights like these that remind the KYJO staff why we do what we do – and that you all are here to support us.

KYJO Open Mic Night Kuppa Joy Overview (1)

Partner Spotlight

Der Manouel Insurance Group KYJO Partner Spotlight (1)

Der Manouel Insurance Group

This month, we’re spotlighting the partner who has provided KYJO’s insurance coverage for over 10 years: Der Manouel Insurance Group! Not only does Der Manouel give us the best coverage, their customer service surpasses all other insurance companies. As a client, you always want to feel important and supported, which is how Der Manouel has made us feel throughout our time working with them. They have supported and sponsored so many KYJO events, and have been one of the anchor sponsors for our annual Big B.A.N.G. Weekend football camp.

Thank you, Joe Thacker, for believing in KYJO’s vision and mission! We look forward to continuing our partnership with you and Der Manouel Insurance Group for years to come.

KYJO Rock Star Award

KYJO Child Care Counselors 1

This Month’s Rock Stars: KYJO’s Child Care Counselors

This month, I want to recognize the unsung heroes of the KYJO organization, who are in the trenches daily … our child care counselors!

If I had to describe these hard-working individuals in one word, it would be “resilient.” I’ve seen firsthand what they encounter day in and day out, and still they wake every day and do their best in order to make a difference in our kids’ lives. Even when confronted with challenging behaviors, they managed to bounce back and give their best effort.

Not too many people understand the commitment needed to do what our child care counselors do. And I want them to know that their work does not go unnoticed, and it is appreciated daily! That’s why, for the month of November, the KYJO Rock Star Award goes to ALL KYJO child care counselors.

Residential Youth Homes - Highlights

KYJO Open Mic Night Kuppa Joy Speaker

On October 11, we hosted our first-ever open mic night at Kuppa Joy Cafe in Clovis – and it was a smashing success!

Our residents and foster youth had a great time showcasing their talents, and our community raised funds for future KYJO programs and events (with Kuppa Joy kindly donating 50% of their proceeds for the evening). We were so glad to see such a great turnout, and to see our residents shine!

– Katie Counts, Mental Health Case Manager

Foster Family Agency - Highlights

This month, our KYJO Resource Parents initiated two new supportive interventions for our KYJO Resource Families. Felicia Carrasco led our first resource parent support group in October. This support group provides an opportunity for our resource parents to get together to discuss common experiences that many other people cannot relate to. In addition to our resource parent support group, Felicia Carrasco and Brittany Sousa started a KYJO Families Support Group Page. This page allows resource parents to connect with each other and offer support. KYJO is so proud of our resource parents who have taken the initiative to create a supportive community for our resource parents.

– Veronica Welch, FFA Social Worker

Mental Health Care - Highlights

Jonnetta Thomas KYJO LMFT

Due to what I was taught growing up, I always imagined that there is a certain image a leader must portray. Since my dad was a pastor, I struggled. As I embarked on a career in the mental health field, I struggled with needing to have all my ducks in a row. My life needed to look perfect. I was under the impression that everyone was looking to relate to a perfect person.

As I began conducting workshops, I realized that a perfect person was not what people were looking for. They were looking for someone who was transparent. They wanted to relate to someone who was real and relatable. It was amazing how wrong my perception was. I had to come to the realization that working on myself is an ongoing process. In fact, I think I will be working on myself until the day I die.

What is my point? Lighten up on yourself. It is okay to be imperfect. It is also okay if you are feeling broken. Just Keep Going! Accept where you are until you are able to be somewhere else.

If you are struggling with the hand life has dealt you, remember:

  1. Be honest with yourself. You cannot fix what is broken without first acknowledging it. (Rid yourself of the need to be perfect.)
  2. Be gentle and loving toward yourself. (Ask yourself what you need to be okay.)
  3. Take the judgment off yourself. (“Should” statements are judgments.) Reject negative self-talk and put downs.
  4. Do not forget to allow yourself to be where you are until you are able to be somewhere else.

– Jonnetta Thomas, LMFT

Monthly Motivation

It’s Time to Make a Decision

We all encounter moments where we are at a crossroads and have the opportunity to make a decision. They could be as routine as where to go to lunch, or as significant as who to marry. But all of these decisions shape our lives.

The decisions we make are sometimes based on outside circumstances or influences. Often, they’re made right on the spot. But what about bigger decisions – those influenced by our dreams, desires, and passions?

The sad thing is, it’s these sorts of decisions that we often put off making. Whether because we fear rejection or the unknown, we let this decisions sit on the back burner … sometimes until it’s too late to make a decision at all.

Today, I want to encourage you to make decisions that allow you to pursue your dreams, desires, and passions. And after you’ve made those decisions, I want you to continue taking intentional, consistent action to achieve your goals.

Watch how the universe will move with you, after you’ve made decision to achieve your dreams!


Kevin Jordan

Executive Director

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