Mental Health Toll of Covid Lockdowns for Teens is Tremendous

Aubrey is a bright 13-year-old who has lived in Chicago all of his life. He lives with his mother in the Woodlawn, attends Fiske and plays basketball for their team. He currently spends springs and summers with his father in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Aubrey has spent time away from Chicago, this gives him a unique view of a city immersed in problems that seem to be growing. Nevertheless, Aubrey remains hopeful that Chicago will become a place with a positive image.

Aubrey’s heart is to make a difference by showing compassion to others. Aubrey takes out the trash for his elderly neighbors and actively seeks to be an asset to his community. He dreams of playing basketball professionally but knows nothing is guaranteed so he sees engineering as a viable career path. He would love to open a place like Greenline (coffee) to keep kids off of the streets.

Aubrey has faced many of the same problems as his peers. His love for Chicago has not lessened because of those hardships. He possesses a pride for Chicago that desires to hear the “upside” perspective of Chicago in the news and media. The bad news puts a scar on the face of the city. Still, Aubrey loves the energy and how fast things move here.

Aubrey first came to Sunshine Gospel Ministries 2 years ago and says his mother has peace of mind knowing he is being encouraged at Sunshine. In his mother’s words “If it wasn’t for Sunshine, he wouldn’t be in Chicago”. With an exit to Iowa always an arm’s length away, Aubrey leans on His mother and her admonition to “never give up”. He believes Sunshine has changed her view of the city, Sunshine has also changed Aubrey’s view of himself. In his words, he knows his “worth on earth”.