The Storyboard Project, founded by Mira Zimet in 2014, is a short documentary web series created to lift up stories of youth who have experienced foster care. The project is based in Los Angeles, but this past year, Zimet, along with her husband, purchased an Airstream trailer, hitched it to a truck and went on the road — with Zimet meeting and interviewing youth along the way.
The Imprint will be featuring these videos throughout the month of December. Today, we feature the story of Shayla from Tampa, Fla.
“I think that someone should look at, like, really what an 18-year-old does, what an 18-year-old needs to succeed, instead of just saying, ‘Ok, we’re giving them $1,000 and we’re giving them free tuition, that should be good enough. They should be able to figure everything else out.” – Shayla, Florida
The Storyboard Project traveled to Tampa, Florida and met with Shayla, who shared her journey into foster care at 14. Her parents, both addicted to prescription pain medication, spent years shuttling Shayla and her twin brother across the country visiting emergency rooms, until social services finally caught up with them.
Shayla reveals her own struggle with anxiety and how she eventually found stability — often through the people and resources she was able to lean on. But what also drove her was her own realization while sitting in the backseat of her parents’ van, watching the world go by. “This can’t be it, this can’t be what was planned for me, because inside me there is such a fire that wants to do so much more.”
“On the Road” is sponsored by Journey to Success. Stay tuned for more great profiles of youth from Arizona, California, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon and Tennessee.