A Heart for Our Youth
Joe Vidot only worked for the Center for Sharing (CFS) for 2 years but the impact that he made on this community is immeasurable. Some of us recall what the atmosphere was like at The Collegium before Joe started working here in 2015. The youth rarely came in here just to hang out or do homework. Only months after Joe started working at CFS he chose to move to the Tierra Vida community to be able to better guide the young men in the community. These young men were in desperate need of a positive male role model and someone who can walk alongside them while their parents were hard at work during the day. Joe started hosting Saturday “family dinner” nights at his home for the high school students in the Tierra Vida community. It wasn’t just about getting together to eat a warm meal and have a good time. It was about making these teens feel like they belong and like they are a part of something. Each night they also set aside time after dinner to read from the bible and get to know Jesus and what His vison is for us all.
The afternoons in the Collegium slowly began to fill up with students doing their homework, some sitting by the fire place playing UNO, and others just coming in because they needed someone to listen to them or give them advice. Mitch Duarte who lives in the Tierra Vida community is just one of the teens impacted by Joe. He was able to attend our going away celebration for Joe. Mitch shared how much Joe has helped him over the past couple of years and that if it wasn’t for Joe and his compassionate nature that a lot of the youth, himself included, would not be where they are today. Joe got emotional and expressed how much of an impression the Tierra Vida youth and the staff at CFS have made on him as well. A year ago Joe started a small media and marketing business and with how successful it’s been within its first year he made the decision to leave CFS and focus solely on his business. It was an emotional see you later, as it’s not a good bye.