My name is Jonathan. I was five years old when this picture was taken. I am ten now and I have a story I would like to tell you.
On a fall day when I was almost six years old a lady came to our house. This lady said I would have to leave my home, my dad and mom and live in a different home for a while. I was very upset but my mom and dad said I needed to go with this lady and everything would be alright.
As I left my home, I remember feeling very scared and sad and I cried for a long time. The lady told me my next home was very far away but my dad and mom would visit me when they could.
I have lived in three different homes since that sad day. My dad and mom visited me four times in the first two years. They have not visited me since I was eight years old. I would pray every Christmas and on my birthday that my parents would want to see me and visit. They never came.
A year ago I asked the lady social worker why my parents did not come to visit me. She told me I would not see my parents anymore because they could no longer care for me. She said I would always live in a different home with people who could care for me.
I always tried to be good and do what my dad and mom told me to do. I cannot understand why my parents couldn’t care for me. I never complained about being hungry when there wasn’t any food in our house. I would tell myself I could wait until tomorrow morning when I would get breakfast at my school. When my parents would have parties that lasted all night, I would go to my room and close the door. Some nights I could not sleep because all those people at the party were so loud. I never told my parents because they would get angry at me. Sometimes my dad and mom would argue and scream and then my mom would say she wished she never had me. Many times my dad would get angry and hit me, but I learned not to cry because it would make my dad madder and he would hit me again.
I still try very hard to understand what I did wrong. I think about it everyday.
The name and age of this child have been changed and the details removed but the story is very real . Within our own communities, stories very similar to Jonathan’s story of neglect, abuse, and abandonment are taking place. These children are not responsible for their circumstances.
Circle Ranch is needed to provide alternative housing in a safe, secure, loving environment to help them heal, so these cycles will not continue to be repeated. We can't make a difference without your help.