February 2023 – JDC

February 13-16, Joan Zych with Journey of Hope worked with the youth at Minnehaha Juvenile Detention Center to create a visual representation of healthy decision-making. We enjoyed our time having one-on-one conversations with the youth by listening and learning from one another. The pictures and statements demonstrate healthy decision-making: finding time to breathe and enjoy the outdoors; respecting oneself and others; healthy foods.

This is how I take the time to view the Earth – to breathe and think about how it helps me live. 


You have to jump at the opportunity when light is in the darkness. 


This artwork based on healthy choices shows the two ways I can go about myself. I can either keep going with my lifestyle or change my ways and become a more presentable figure. 


Even if you are singled out, you need to breathe, because the opportunities are going to come eventually. 


Follow the yellow brick road, it will lead to success. The tree represents my loneliness. The black lines represent my bad habits and the yellow is bright because it’s like my insides. On the inside, I am bright.


This means don’t judge anyone by the color of their skin or their culture. Everyone’s the same – you came in the same way, you might not go out the same way, but we’ll go to the same place. 


No matter who you are. We can get along even if we are a different race, religion, etc. 



Some comments from the youth about their experience:

It was really fun and I had a great time. 

I like the help you guys gave me and I’m grateful. 

Thank you guys for this opportunity, especially for people like me that are going to and have been here for a while. It was a great escape. 


What some youth learned about themselves from participating in the program:

I’m a decent artist

To eat and do something healthy

I’m good at painting



Kari Palmer