“It’s been six months and almost eight hours and I’m getting tired of this place.” Hui (girl), age 15.
Over a period of two years, Susan Madden Lankford and her daughter, Polly, met with young people in trouble with the law and encouraged them to share their hopes, fears and feelings. Born, Not Raised: Voices from Juvenile Hall, is a compilation of youth stories—including that of Hui.
Hui lives in a facility designed for girls needing treatment for drug abuse and/or preparing for reentry into society. Since her entry into the youth facility, Hui has had almost no contact with her family, including two brothers who are also detained in different locations. Although she has come to terms with the fact that what she did was wrong, she has trouble understanding how to move forward, whether anyone will allow her to, or help her do so.
To submit a youth story for NJJN's website, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.