Michael's story: These are my people

Guest blogger: Michael, young adult from the first table in Cleveland reflects back on four years with his group.

I had the first table in Cleveland, so I get asked about my experience on Open Table all the time. I like telling about it because it has been such a great experience for me and it's not over. I am still in relationship with my mentors--they are in my life.

I usually say, it's not a program.  It's like getting a family.  Overall, it's a real blessing. My mentors have helped me grow up and taught me how God has been watching over me, and they have all been there for me when I needed them.  We have had many great experiences together too.

We had to learn about each other first. But now we are comfortable with each other--we even have inside jokes. Debbie is called the Bank of Deb because she's always trying to get me to save money.

I recommend to other kids aging out, that they should get a table and their own mentors.  I say, these are my people---but you will get your own.

I've had more hope lately and even started to dream a little. Some of my goals are getting a better job and moving into a nice apartment with roommates and having a good relationship.

Amber Donovan