20150829_112112_HDR-2-400x302Last month something life changing happened. Something that will undoubtedly change the projection of Joseph’s life. He stepped off a plane like many have before and arrived in the land of the free. Joseph is a teenage refugee.

For years Joseph and his family have been fleeing from the dangers of war. Ethnically Afghan his family has gone from Iran to Turkey and now to Sacramento. He has for the first time in years started school and is now trying to navigate much more than the halls of high school. He is trying to learn English, find friends and enjoy life as a free person.

This past weekend Joseph, his younger brother and a few friends joined StudentReach on a trip to the mountains where we enjoyed the classic American past time of camping.

Hiking, roasting marshmallows, kayaking and swimming filled 2 1\2 days. During our down time we had English lessons designed to provide insight about who everyone was and what they plan to do with their new life in America. Learning about who your fellow campers are is essential to long lasting friendships.

We may not have linguistically understood one another as we worked to overcome language barriers but we do understand that this camping trip was more than a past time. It was a start of a new way of thinking. It was the start of being apart of a community of people who will succeed together. StudentReach is helping students to define their lives, become contributing citizens of the communities near & far and to overcome obstacles – like fleeing from home to find safety in a new and unknown land.


 Written by: Raquel Shipp
 Development Director,
 a multi-site Alive Life Coaching coach
 and mother to the most
 adorable toddler on the planet.