Partnering with Communities
Reconnect, It's Up to Me
Reconnect, It's Up to MePartnering with community members
Colbert was able to overcome difficulties in his own life and go on to help other boys who had been in situations similar to his own. Colbert grew up not knowing his father and, at age 16, found that he had nowhere to live. He turned to his mentor, a high school teacher, who became his guardian and allowed Colbert to live with him. Even when Colbert became a teenage father, the support of his guardian remained steadfast. Eventually, Colbert's 2-year-old son came to live with them full-time. Colbert went on to obtain his education while taking care of his son.
Over 10 years later, while working in a shelter program, Colbert met two young brothers who did not have family able to care for them. They had drifted through many foster homes and were very much at risk for aging out of the system. A Reconnect permanency worker contacted Colbert and asked if he'd be willing to mentor the brothers. Colbert began with mentoring and has since become the foster parent to the older brother, Derrick. He is hoping the younger brother will move in with them in a few months. Colbert plans to begin the adoption process for both, which will give him three teenage sons, including his own.
Derrick wrote this poem about his feelings on finding a family with Colbert.
Once again living with a family
that isn't my biological one
But this time I’m living the thinking process
of a biological son
me not to be in the presence of my
But he’s gone
Though not biological father but I
love him like one
And at least I’m convinced that he loves
me like a son
Speaking things into existence
that I’m mature enough to see
The change that's beginning to happen
Have Hope, Be Strong, Your Family
will come too
If God could do it for me
He can do it for you