Archive for the ‘at risk youth’ Category

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This honest, heartbreaking, and at times funny memoir is the story of a boy who is attracted to other boys and his coming of age in the tumultuous 60s. It follows David as he rejects a church that condemns him, resists a country’s readiness to send him into a war he opposes, and stands up to a tyrannical father who controls him with a hard fist and an iron will. It is a tender yet courageous tale, one that in the end brings David to a hard-won acceptance of his sexuality, and an unexpected peace with his dying father.

Tightfisted Heart is also a prequel to I Don’t Wish Nobody to Have a Life Like Mine: Tales of Kids in Adult Lockup which chronicled David’s ten years teaching incarcerated teenagers.  His new memoir explores the underpinnings of his lifelong dedication to helping at-risk youth. It offers insights into how the harsh circumstances of his own upbringing and his experiences as a marginalized gay kid shaped his commitment to social justice, in particular, to teaching “throw-away” young people in various “special needs” settings—in rehab, a psychiatric hospital, a community alternative high school as well as an adult prison.

Tightfisted Heart is available at Amazon and Levellers Press

 

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An excellent visual analysis of what is wrong with our juvenile justice system and how to make it right from Youth Transition Funders Group.

 

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