After a childhood spent at a training center, Holly’s journey with DePaul Community Resources began when she was placed in the Treatment Foster Care program at the age of 14. When she aged out of the foster care system, Holly transitioned to the Sponsored Residential program. What Holly didn’t know was that after years of temporary foster homes she had finally found her forever home—she has since lived under the Jennings family’s care for 22 years. According to Holly’s biological sister, Judy, Holly couldn’t have been placed in a more loving or caring home. The Jennings’s have been providing care to Holly since she graduated high school and over the years, the role of primary care provider has been passed on to their daughter Ashley. The Jennings family describes Holly as having a fiery personality: She’s a redhead and everything that comes with it, balanced with an irresistible sweet side that loves babies and animals.
Holly has been a long-standing regular at DePaul Community Resources’ Waterlick OPTIONS Day Support Center and attends five days a week. “Holly enjoys going to OPTIONS so much,” said Ashley. “She even looks forward to the car rides on the way there.” Participating in OPTIONS has given Holly access to a community outside of her care providers and relatives where she can partake in fun learning activities and enjoy special events with her friends. She has made many lasting friendships and connections in her time there and has participated in countless activities with these friends. Even though Holly can’t always verbalize what she wants to communicate, Ashley is quick to say, “She’s taught me more than I’ve ever taught her.”