“Transitions” seems to be the watchword in Ravin’s young life. When she first entered the dependency system, she was placed with her godmother. “My godmother used to be the fun person to be with,” Ravin explained. “Then when she became my guardian, her role changed. We had some real ups and downs for a while.” When Ravin met Noelle, her current Advocate, she felt instantly comfortable. “I didn’t want to be treated like a teenager,” Ravin said, “and Noelle
understood that.” At age 18, Ravin gave birth to her daughter, Melanie, who is now a year old. Thus began her transition from a single teen-ager to a single mother. “Ravin grew up quickly when she had Melanie,” Noelle said. “She was determined to be a good mother, and was more determined than ever to be
self-sufficient.” With support from her extended family, including her Advocate, Ravin and Melanie live on their own, and Ravin works for her uncle’s at-home health care agency. She never misses her weekly Mommy and Me parenting class, and has completed her first semester at Cabrillo College. Ravin says that without her Advocate, Noelle, “I would never have gone to college. I didn’t know where to go, or what to do. Noelle helped me fill out my financial aid paperwork, choose classes, and showed me around the school.” Noelle says, “It’s a delicate balance with Ravin. I’m always there for her, always reliable. But she is spreading her wings and enjoying her self-sufficiency, and I have to honor that.”
Ravin is now an adult and has chosen to share her real name and photo.