It’s been two years since Sebastian, now 11 years old, was featured on Stories from Skid Row.
When you last saw Sebastian, he and his mother were living at Hope Gardens where he discusses the road that led his family to Hope Gardens and their future, including his wish for a pet dog.
At the end of 5th grade, Sebastian and his mother moved into their own apartment. His mother, who now works as a Case Manager at Hope Gardens, successfully transitioned into independent living, but Sebastian encountered challenges along the way.
Children experiencing homelessness can suffer significant trauma or setbacks, and it’s common for a child experiencing homelessness to fall behind up to two grade levels.
But Claudia, equipped with the tools she learned at Hope Gardens, knew exactly what to do to ensure that Sebastian received the additional support he needed.
Where are they now?
Sebastian participates in weekly Bible studies with his youth group, and Claudia adopted a senior dog who now serves as an emotional support animal for Sebastian.
Like most kids, he loves video games and stays connected to his friends at Hope Gardens by playing video games online. His best friend currently lives at Hope Gardens, too.
Halfway through his first year of middle school, Sebastian’s behavior has improved dramatically. He’s becoming more independent and is succeeding in his afterschool tutoring program.
He loves to ride his scooter and wants to be a chef. Claudia is teaching him how to cook, and he wants to start taking cooking classes after school.
In addition, Sebastian still returns to Hope Gardens to fulfill his volunteer hours for middle school. His favorite activity is to help out in Peeps daycare, caring for infants through preschool-aged children.
Sebastian is now in 6th grade and will turn 12 years old this April.