Hello KYJO Community,
September was National Suicide Prevention Awareness month and this year more than ever; it was important to share information and resources to bring attention to this often-stigmatized topic. The additional stress of a pandemic, wildfires, social unrest, home schooling and work from home have made the current times a particularly vulnerable time for many, increasing our susceptibility to episodes of irritability, anxiety, and even depression. We recognize that the demands of social distancing present challenges and may exacerbate untreated mental health conditions. Suicidal thoughts can affect anyone, regardless of age, background, or gender. We can all benefit from having honest conversations about mental health conditions and suicide, because just one conversation can save a life.
Remember that during these extraordinary times our society is experiencing, do your best to “Grow Through What Your Go Through”. This starts with having an open dialogue with others about how you are feeling. Take inventory of your self-care routines and practice them: go for a walk, work out, paint, do the things that bring you happiness. Those that are currently going through a challenging life season, you are urged to implement a daily gratitude practice. By highlighting the positive in your life, you can improve the status of your mental health, increase your self-esteem and enhance the feeling of empathy towards others. Take care of yourselves and your families. Thank you all again for your continuous efforts and support of KYJO!
KYJO Events & Outings
This month, the male residents in the Barstow house enjoyed a day in the Central Coast at Pismo Beach. For most of the young men on this trip, it was their very first venture out to the beach, including their first experience swimming in an ocean. The day also consisted of eating local seafood and was capped off with a small hike to Dinosaur Caves Park to catch the sunset. All of the residents thoroughly enjoyed their day and are eager to participate in a return trip to the beach.
New Employee Spotlight
In earning our recent STRTP accreditation we have the obligation to hire new employees to oversee the mental health services of our Residential Youth Homes. Our first hire is Marty Hosier in the position of Head of Mental Health Services. Marty is a graduate of Brandman University, earning a Master’s degree in Marriage, Child and Family Therapy. She comes to KYJO with years of experience working in residential care, owning and operating a residential care facility for the elderly population from 2007-2014. She and her mother were prompted to open their own facility, after a negative experience with a facility her Uncle resided at while battling Parkinson’s disease.
In her free time, Marty enjoys traveling and trying local foods where she is visiting. She has traveled to 21 countries. It is on her bucket list to travel to every country in the world. She also likes watching Anime and doing arts & crafts projects. She is currently pursuing her PhD in Forensic Psychology. She lives in Fresno with her husband, 11 year old daughter and 8 year old son.
Foster Family Agency
In September, KYJO FFA certified the home of Rebecca Hardison. She resides in the town of Raymond, located in the mountains of Madera County. She and her 17 year old daughter Riley live in a home a 260 acre property that includes an adjacent home her parents live in. Rebecca is a 12th grade World History teacher at Yosemite High School in Oakhurst near Yosemite National Park. Rebecca’s daughter Riley currently works as a preschool teacher. She excited help her mother tackle the challenge of foster parenting. The Hardison home will be the first certified foster home, as we begin to place efforts to provide quality foster homes for children in rural areas of the Central Valley. We are thrilled to welcome the Hardison’s into the KYJO family!
KYJO Student of the Week
In the coming weeks…look out on KYJO social media pages for our KYJO FFA Student of the week. Each week, we will be highlighting a foster child with our agency who is doing well in their foster home and excelling in handling their academic responsibilities. Students are nominated by their foster parents and each week’s winner is decided upon by FFA staff. FFA Social Workers are very proud all the children residing in our homes for adapting so well the changes the Covid-19 Pandemic as brought to their daily school routines.
CK Sports Quickie
This month KYJO Executive Director Kevin Jordan sat down with B95 DJ CK, on his iHeart Radio CK Sports Quickie podcast. He spoke about the importance of mental health, finding his purpose after retiring as a professional athlete and advice on how others can explore within themselves to find peace of mind. Key takeaways from the podcast were Kevin’s AHA moment while working with The Trevor Project and his fundamental steps to transforming your mind, body and spirit. Kevin also spoke about how KYJO and our annual Big Bang Weekend came fruition in the Central Valley. Thank you CK and AM 1340 Fox Sports Radio for this opportunity for Kevin to share his story and spread the message on the importance of mental health. To listen to the full podcast, please click on the link below to listen to the podcast in full. You can listen to the CK Sports Quickie podcast daily on AM 1349 Fox Sports or on the iHeart Radio app.
Our doors are always open to donations for our Residential Group Homes and foster youth. We are in need of:
- Athletic shoes, hiking boots and river sandals (variety of men’s and women’s sizes)
- New pillowcases and bath towels
- New or gently-used sweatpants
- Paper products (toilet paper, tissues, and paper towels)
- Kitchen supplies (aluminum foil, zip lock bags in sandwich and one-gallon size)
- Cleaning supplies (no-ammonia all-purpose cleaners, laundry detergent, dishwasher soap)
- New, unopened packages of athletic socks – crew or low cut – and boys’ and girls’ underwear
- Personal hygiene items for boys and girls (deodorant, hair supplies, bar soap, toothpaste/toothbrushes, body lotion, etc.)
- Gift cards to grocery and retail stores (Target, Wal-Mart,), restaurants/coffee shops
- Movie, bowling, skiing or swimming passes or tickets to sporting events, concerts or plays
- Arts and crafts items (yarn, beads, art paint, construction paper, poster board)
- Board games, puzzles and playing cards
KYJO Enterprises, Inc. is now a featured organization of the Amazon Smile Foundation. Amazon Smile is a charitable extension of Amazon that allows consumers to donate a portion of their purchases to the organization of their choice. Most products that are featured on Amazon are eligible for Amazon Smile with 0.05% of profits being donated. Please visit https://smile.amazon.com to learn more about the program and to sign up to have your Amazon purchases benefit KYJO.