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When I was one year old, I moved from Chicago to Haiti to live in my aunt’s orphanage while my mom completed her nursing degree in the States. At a very young age, I was surrounded by children who had lost their parents to either death or abandonment. It was during this time that the seed of compassion for disadvantaged children was planted.

I moved back to Chicago when I was five, but visited Haiti every summer to help out at the orphanage. During the school year, I took on the task of planning fun activities and being the pretend “therapist” throughout my high school. My passion for kids continued past adolescence and led me to pursue a college degree in Child Psychology with a minor in Business and a Master’s Degree in Social Work.

I had always had the desire to one day open a facility that meets all the needs of at-risk children, but it wasn’t until a major tragedy occurred in my life that I found the urgency to move forward in this endeavor. This tragedy was the loss of my son. Just after becoming a new mother, my baby of one month passed away. As I mourned his death, I considered his life and how much it meant to me, despite its brevity. His life was lost but my memory of him was not. I wanted to leave a legacy for him – one that would give life to those who were never given the chance to flourish because of their circumstances as children. My son’s name was Genesis.

The name “Genesis” means origin, root or beginning. As my first child, his birth was the beginning of a new stage in my life. Little did I know that his death would signify the beginning of something new as well: the founding of Genesis Hopeful Haven. Inspired by Genesis and fueled by my passion for children in need, GHH was born to offer new beginnings to at-risk kids. This blog will take you through my struggles and victories in the journey of Building Genesis.