The Damico Family
Hello, let me share a few things about our family. My name is Jenny and I have been with my husband since I was 17. I’m almost 50 now. Just like the song, “God Only Knows,” is how our life has been. We did not expect in our 40’s that we would be raising five grandchildren. We have a 3-bedroom home we bought in 2005. Needless to say, we are a full house! My youngest daughter also lives with us, so that’s eight people in our home. Last year, we became guardians of our newborn grandson when he was released from the ICU as an NAS (Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome) baby. Only God knows our struggles. Now Clubhouse knows them too.
The girls receive therapy through school, and that is how I was referred to Fort McKinley Clubhouse. I heard it was teens helping kids and a faith-oriented place to send your children. At the time, I had no idea how wonderful it was going to be. Having the girls have a place to go after school has been amazing. It allows them time to unwind and join in with the fun and learning activities. To see other teens give up their time to make them feel special is always a plus.
I have seen positive changes in the girls’ lives. The girls are 11, 9, 7 and 5. The 11yr old goes to Teen-in-Training meetings and is growing in self-leadership. I’ve seen her become more independent and an inspiration to others. She’s not the quiet sit-in-the-corner person she used to be. That is because of the individual care from Clubhouse teen leaders.
The 9-year-old recently won her school’s student achievement award. She has the most difficult time dealing with early childhood neglect. I have seen her outbursts become less frequent. I have seen her want to help others. I have seen her give up something she wanted and give to her younger sister. If one of her sisters is ill and misses Clubhouse, she asks for extra snacks and activities for her sister. The thoughtfulness of her caring heart is because of Clubhouse teens.
When I reach out for help from Clubhouse, I find understanding and prayer, plus material items like school supplies and clothing. Not just for the girls, but for the baby as well.