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Author Archives: Sayre Savage

December Youth Highlight: Peggy

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peggyTell us about yourself
My name is Peggy and I’m 19 years old and I’m currently a student at Poland Spring Academy. I enjoy spending time out in the community as much as I possibly can. I enjoy hanging out with friends and going roller skating at the Roller Drome. I also enjoy listening to Country and Pop music, mostly country music though.

When you think about Youth MOVE Maine, what is something that you really value or like about Youth MOVE Maine?
What I value from Youth MOVE Maine is that it helps youth get out into the community and it also gives youth a chance to be able to open up to someone and confide in with issues they’re having or just needing someone to talk. I like that they can get youth out into the community and enjoy things outside of their home, like bowling and or going to the beach.
What is one major issue that is facing youth today? How can other youth and providers help fix this issue?
A lot of youth and parents are clashing and some youth don’t wanna be at home and they aren’t keeping healthy some of them have a lot of toxic environments. If some youth don’t wanna be at home, there are some options like New Beginnings, they can help with a temporary placement away from their parents. You can be there for at least 30 days unless you wanna go to the Transitional Living Program which you can be there for up to at least a year and a half, I believe. The other option is seeing if you can stay with a friend or close family you trust that isn’t a toxic environment.
What inspires you to be the best you that you can be?
What inspires me to do my best is my friends they help me believe that I can do anything if I put my mind to it. If I make a bad choice or decision they don’t make fun of me, they help me move past the mistakes I make. My boyfriend also inspires me to do my best my supporting me in whatever I do, he sometimes say don’t do that it’s a bad idea and then I think twice about and my biggest inspiration is my mother. She inspires me so much! I wanna be like her when I grow up more. She’s the definition of a extremely strong lady. She adopted me when I was 6, she inspires me to do what my heart tells me to do and follow your dreams.
What is your favorite part of the holiday season?
My favorite part of the holiday season, is being around family and friends and having a good time and enjoying myself, but most of all it’s being surrounded around happiness of the ones that I love.
(This interview was edited for length and clarity)

Diverting to Treatment: Webisode

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View this webisode!

View this webisode!

Recently, Moon Nguany, Southern Maine’s Regional Coordinator participated in a SAMHSA KSOC-TV webisode entitled: Diverting to Treatment: Community Policing and Supporting Youth with Mental Health Needs.

This webisode will explore the changing role of law enforcement in addressing youth and young adults with mental illness. As a follow-up to the 2016 Awareness Day panel on juvenile justice, the program will provide a deeper look at evidence-based strategies such as crisis intervention training (CIT) to support collaborative efforts among law enforcement, mental health professionals and communities to divert to treatment in lieu of arrest.

Moon discussed the various ways that youth can be involved in the processes that impact themselves. Moon also discussed our Youth Advisory Council and other programs that give youth voice in decisions that impact them.

You may learn more about our programs here or contact one of your Regional Offices.

The Election

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No matter how hard I think about it, the election just doesn’t feel real. We as a country have just elected a president that has no political experience. Someone who is racist, sexist, and is a hateful person. So while having Donald Trump as our President-elect the white man who voted for him will be fine, but the majority are not. Trump has openly said he will try to repeal equal marriage rights as well as attacking same sex adoption and parenting. Although I am not part of that community I am scared of the impact our new President will have in the next for years.

November Staff Highlight: Becky

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beckyThis month we are going to go “behind the scenes” for our Staff Highlight. Becky is the Office Manager for THRIVE/Youth MOVE Maine. THRIVE is the parent organization to Youth MOVE Maine. Let’s hear what Becky has to share!

How long have you been with Thrive/Youth MOVE Maine and what is your position?

I started at Thrive/Youth MOVE Maine in June of 2015 as a temp. In August, I became the Office Manager, which encompasses some work in the finance department, being the HR liaison, and acting as a receptionist in addition to making sure our Portland office is running smoothly.

What about Youth MOVE Maine and the work that happens here inspires you?

Being a part of YMM has taught me what it means to act compassionately. Working with our staff has broadened my mind in so many ways; I’ve learned how to approach people who have experienced trauma, and I’ve been exposed to societal inequalities I might not have noticed otherwise. This job inspires me to connect with humans and advocate for those who need a voice.

The MOVE in Youth MOVE Maine stands for Motivating Others Through Voices of Experience, what does that mean to you?

To me, MOVE means to take your experiences – your trauma, your mental illness, your daily struggles and the obstacles you face – and share them with the intention of helping to make life a little better for the people around you. Share them with your peers, with your elders, with young people… share them with anyone who has a conflict making them feel lonely, or with someone who needs an example to follow. I got to share the story of my childhood trauma this summer, and I’ve had a few people thank me for setting a precedent where they could talk about their traumas. The thanks was nice, but really, it was inspiring to see women open up because they suddenly realized they have a voice.

When you think back through your time at Thrive/Youth MOVE Maine what is a fond memory you have?

Administrator’s Day 2016. Receiving cacti and flowers from my peers made me SOB. I felt so cared for.

If you could do anything to change the world, what would you do?

I wish the stigma surrounding trauma and mental illness would go away. It’s still so taboo to share the dark parts of ourselves. If you do open up, people will tell you to keep quiet so they don’t have to hear about upsetting things. There’s a lot of shaming that goes on. Just this morning, I was speaking with a woman who felt violated because of something inappropriate that happened to her at work. She kept saying, “I’m so embarrassed!” But what did she have to be embarrassed about? A grown man crossing physical boundaries is what’s embarrassing.

What’s your favorite outdoors activity in fall weather?

Walking or running. You can do either at any time of the year, but the leaves are so beautiful this time of year. And the temperature is a lot more comfortable!!

November Youth Highlight: Brooke

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img951303Brooke is one of the many youth who engage with Youth MOVE Maine’s programs on a daily basis. Brooke is looking to go to college to be a Veterinary Technician.

1. Tell us a little about yourself…
Well I’m Brooke I’m 19 I work at Stillwater Health Care as a Dietary Aid. I graduated high school in June of 2015 at Old Town High School. I have two dogs and a cat. My hobbies are hanging out with friends and exercising, but cooking is my favorite. Last I want to go to college to be a vet tech.

2. When you think about Youth MOVE Maine, what is something that you really value or like about Youth MOVE Maine?
I like that they have peer support for teenagers. I think that’s the best thing someone could have done and they should have more around the state.

3. What is one major issue that is facing youth today? How can other youth and providers help fix this issue?
I would say homelessness and hunger. They can help fix this issue by having more programs like youth move, more homeless shelters for teens because Bangor only has one and it’s usually full so they have no where to go.

4. What inspires you to be the best you that you can be?
Seeing people that are struggling so that I can get to a place in my life where I can help them and make a difference.

5. What is your favorite part of fall and why?
Apple picking, corn mazes, all that type of fall stuff and thanksgiving is my favorite holiday hands down.

October Staff Highlight: Sayre

Sayre Savage No Comments

dsc_0634Sayre is our Regional Coordinator in our Bangor Region. Sayre sits on many community committees and boards. She also conducts many of our youth focused activities including workshops, YSP trainings, and other community based activities.

How long have you been with Youth MOVE Maine and what is your position?
I have been with Youth MOVE Maine for 3 years, I am currently the Greater Bangor Region Coordinator, however, I started at Youth MOVE Maine as a Youth Support Partner.

What about Youth MOVE Maine and the work that happens here inspires you?
I really enjoy the success stories that come my direction, as well as being something to the youth that we work with that I didn’t get when I was a teenager.

The MOVE in Youth MOVE Maine stands for Motivating Others Through Voices of Experience, what does that mean to you?
To me, that means we all have a story that is valuable and worth sharing and learning from and that those stories can help other folks in many ways.

When you think back through your time at Youth MOVE Maine what is a fond memory you have?
I really enjoyed doing activities with the youth. My favorite being the ropes course we did last summer.

If you could do anything to change the world, what would you do?
I would do a lot. One of the biggest things I would want to do would be to highlight the good in the world. We see so much negative in the media today that we forget that there is still good in the world, I would want to change that.

What is your favorite halloween-related activity?
Halloween is actually one of my least favorite holidays, so not much. I do like giving candy out to all the kiddos in halloween costumes though.

October Youth Highlight: Austin

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dsc_0355Austin is a member of our Bangor Regional Office, and a member of our statewide Advisory Council.

Tell us a little about yourself…
Hi, my name is Austin Sargent! I am a sophomore in high school. I am very interested in sports such as football. A fun fact about myself is that I am really good at video games!

When you think about Youth MOVE Maine, what is something that you really value or like about Youth MOVE Maine?
Everyone is nice at Youth MOVE Maine. I really like planning events, and participating on Advisory Council.

What is one major issue that is facing youth today? How can other youth and providers help fix this issue?
A major issue facing youth today is drug abuse. Other youth and providers can help fix this issue by talking to other youth, and supporting them through their recovery.

What inspires you to be the best you that you can be?
Helping other people inspires me to be the best version of me!

What is your favorite part of fall and why?
My favorite part of fall is Halloween, because it’s fun being able to scare little kids!

Let’s Carve Some Pumpkins!

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pumpkin-carving-contestAre you ready for fall? Well, we are!! To spring into the fall spirit, Youth MOVE Maine will be hosting a Virtual Pumpkin Carving Contest! We want to see your pumpkin carving skills! So, grab some friends, a few coworkers, or just yourself and go to carving town!

You could win a $25 Wal-Mart Gift Card!

Here’s how to enter:

  1. Visit YouthMOVEMaine.org/PumpkinContest to enter your pumpkin! Don’t forget to read the rules while you’re there!
  2. After the submission deadline has ended, share your pumpkin picture from our Facebook! The Pumpkin with the most likes wins! It’s easy as pie (pumpkin pie that is!)

A few important dates:

  • Friday October 21, 2016 at 5:00pm EST the submissions are no longer accepted.
  • Saturday October 22, 2016 at 12:01am EST the Facebook Voting begins!
  • Sunday October 30, 2016 at 11:59pm EST the Facebook Voting ends!
  • Monday October 31, 2016 the winner is announced!

Woah, woah, woah! There are rules?

Yeah, we had to put some rules in place so that there was order in the contest! Don’t worry, there aren’t too many! But, you can check them out here. If you still have questions you can reach out to Samuel Chamberlain, Marketing Specialist at schamberlain@youthmovemaine.org or 207-991-8875.

September Youth Highlight: Miranda Kramer

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MKramerEach month, Youth MOVE Maine highlights a youth who is making strides to make their community a better place. This month, we are featuring Miranda Kramer a youth from our Mid-Maine region. Read her interview here:

1. Tell us a little about yourself…

My name is Miranda Kramer. I am a 15 year old brunette, and I love french fries because they can be made a million different ways. I’d rather live in a paperback story than in real life, which explains how I’ve been on a million and one adventures without ever leaving home. I’m a firm believer in the pursuit of happiness and rebelling against the status quo. I say I hate to run, but I do it anyways because it feels like I’m flying. I enjoy large teddy bears and old Disney movies. I twirl in the rain and dance on air. The word “cheeks” makes me giggle, and ladybugs freak me out. I have the biggest imagination in the world, and the cutest little dimples. I am a little weird, a little loud, and a whole bunch of awesome, but I am also independent, open-minded, and determined. My name is Miranda Kramer, and I am a strong girl with a big heart.

2. When you think about Youth MOVE Maine, what is something that you really value or like about Youth MOVE Maine?

Before I joined as part of the youth blogging team, I didn’t really have an outlet for my writing. Youth Move Maine has been my microphone, the place where my voice is heard and appreciated. This organization has also been an eye opener for me. Before Youth Move Maine, I was always very sheltered in the way that I talked and what I talked about. I used to be so scared of what people thought of my writing and the topics that I discussed. I never used to brave any controversial arguments or anything that could be seen as “inappropriate”. However, after just a couple of months at YMM, I was already sharing my opinions on things I never would have before, and I was so comfortable doing so because everyone was so supportive. Not once have I ever felt judged for what I talk or write about. Everyone’s opinions are accepted because at Youth Move Maine, it’s not about what society thinks is okay and appropriate; it’s about letting your voice be heard, no matter what you’re saying. There is no judgement when you speak, no backlash for your language, and no resentment for what you’ve done. Youth Move Maine has made me a better person, thanks to the people I’ve come to meet and the friendships that we’ve created. I will forever be grateful to them for giving a young girl a chance to share her voice.

3. What is one major issue that is facing youth today? How can other youth and providers help fix this issue?

As Jimmy Eat World once sang, I am right in the middle of this ride (of life). Although everything will most likely be alright in the future, I feel that a big problem in today’s modern society is that there is a lot of pressure to be a certain way. As kids, we are told that we can be whatever we want when we grow up, whether it’s the president or an astronaut or a rockstar. We eat abundant amounts of sugar and play with whoever we want  and fall in love because we’re kids and we don’t know any better. Yet, as we get older, our imaginations are called a distraction, something that makes us ignorant of what life is really like. We’re not allowed to like kids of the same sex, because someone told us it was wrong. We can no longer dream of being famous, but instead only consider careers that offer the highest income. We now have to watch our weight and worry about what other people think of our bodies. Suddenly, everything has labels: fat, skinny, slut, prude, perfect, gay, freak, etc. Society wants to prepare us for “the real world” where success is money, fame, and status. What happened to just doing what makes us happy? Everyone is shoving their opinions on our life down our throats, about what we should do, who we should love, and who we should be. We are kids. This is the time to figure out for ourselves who we’re meant to be. This is the time to make mistakes and learn from them. Society can not shame us into changing because we’re not seen as “normal”. When you dictate what we are supposed to believe, who to love, and how to look, you are teaching us to hate ourselves. You can talk about what’s normal all you want, but don’t be surprised when I stop listening. There is no “right” way of being human, so don’t say that who I am is wrong.

4. What inspires you to be the best you that you can be?

To be completely honest, I don’t know what inspires me to be the best I can be. I don’t really think it’s about being the best you can be, but instead about never giving up and to keep on trying. For example, I’m not the best runner, but I joined cross country because I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it. It’s really hard for me to keep up and a lot of the time, I have to walk, even when I know that I could keep going. I know that if I really pushed, I could do it, but sometimes I’m not strong enough. So, I walk. I walk and when I’m ready, I run again. I am not the best I can be, but I never stop trying. It’s hard for me, but I won’t quit. I show up to practice each day, even though it makes me want to cry. As long as you don’t give up on yourself, I think that not being the best you can be is okay. We’re human, and sometimes, we need a break to catch our breath. As long as you keep trying, you’ll get there eventually.

5. What is your favorite season (spring, winter, summer, fall) and why?

My favorite season is fall. I love fall because there’s so much color, in the trees and in the flowers and in the sky. I love going apple picking with my family. I love when it’s cold enough for a sweater, but there’s still that sunny warmth in the air. I love dressing up for Halloween, even though I’m too old to trick-or-treat. I love a new school year and meeting new people. I love haunted hayrides and apple cider. I love Thanksgiving feasts and pumpkin pie. I love fall because everything seems so picturesque, as if this is the way life is supposed be all of the time.

September Staff Highlight: Kayla Yirrell

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13427905_10206259588230266_14769365968777751_n (2)Kayla is the Youth Support Partner for our Mid-Maine (Lewiston) region.

1. How long have you been with Youth MOVE Maine and what is your position?
I am a Youth Support Partner and I have been working for Youth MOVE Maine for about 8 months now.
2. What about Youth MOVE Maine and the work that happens here inspires you?
Everything about this program inspires me. Meeting new youth throughout the community and being able to meet with them and build a peer relationship is so inspiring. I learn so much through these youth that I work with. Along with watching them reach their goals and have a voice from the first time I meet with them to the very last day. Seeing how much they have grown throughout the ysp program is so inspiring and keeps me going.
3. The MOVE in Youth MOVE stands for Motivating Others Through Voices of Experience, what does that mean to you?
To me this means that no matter what you have been through in your past that one can have the resilience to push through their obstacles in life and motivate other through these obstacles. Having been through my own experiences and still going through some it makes a peer to peer relationship real. I am not telling these youth that I work with that I am perfectly fine now. I let them know that I am still going day by day and overcoming obstacles just like any other individual goes through. And being able to connect with a youth that is or has been through the same thing builds our peer to peer relationship even more. And also being able to pass on the skills to be able to motivate their own friends or families.
4. When you think back through your time at Youth MOVE Maine what is a fond memory you have?
I think the best thing looking back is seeing certain individuals that I have worked with overcome their fears and face things head on. I was told by a youth that she was able to stand up to someone in her life that was causing her stress. She told me that if it wasn’t for me letting her know that she has a voice and even though she is young, she has every right to express the way she feels. She expressed that she would have never been able to say the things that needed to be said. She has grown so much since the first day I met with her. And that alone makes me want to keep making such an amazing impact in these individuals lives.
5. If you could do anything to change the world, what would you do?
If I could change anything in this world, I would probably have to say I would end all types of abuse. A majority of the youth that I have worked with have witnessed or been through some type of traumatic experience.I hope and pray that will all come to an end. After volunteering at shelters and seeing these young children that have either been abused or witnessed abuse at such a young age is unbelievable. So going from working with these young children to older adolescents and hearing their stories breaks my heart. No child should have to experience any of that.
6. You’re traveling to a remote island that only allows you to pack 3 things, what do you bring?
Depends on how long I am stuck on this island. If it was only a day, I would probably bring a radio, since all I do is listen to music. I would bring a bathing suit so I could swim, and I would bring a basket full of food. If I was stuck there for more than a day I would take my cousin so that I had someone to hang out with instead of a radio because we could both keep each other company.

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3 Regional Offices across Maine!

Youth MOVE Maine operates 3 regional offices across the state! Our offices are hubs of youth-focused activities! Find an office near you to get involved in one of our many programs across Maine.