Straight Talk Program
|Posted by [email protected] on October 22, 2019 at 12:40 AM||comments (127)|
Morris Media Live with Phyllis of Staright Talk
10/21/2019 at 6:30 pm to7:30 pm
|Posted by [email protected] on August 26, 2019 at 12:30 AM||comments (209)|
I met Phyllis at a time where I questioned where the trajectory of my life was headed. Due to Phyllis’ kindness, never-ending support and my involvement with the Straight Talk Program I am recently a proud graduate from California State University, Chico with my Master of Social Work degree with a focus in mental health. Furthermore, I was given the honor of graduating with distinction because of maintaining a 4.0 GPA throughout my time in the program and because of my recognized involvement with the School of Social Work at the University.
Phyllis came into my life in 2008 when I was struggling to make positive choices as a young adult; she immediately took me under her wing and began mentoring me both in my personal and professional life. Phyllis provided me with the opportunity to first serve as an administrative assistant to the program, at this time I completed a variety of office duties and attended community-based events alongside Phyllis representing the Straight Talk Program. At each workshop and speaking engagement, we attended together. I was in awe of the passion, professionalism and work ethic that Phyllis demonstrated and because of her these same characteristics I make sure are at the forefront of everything that I do. Additionally, through these experiences I had the opportunity to witness the impact that Phyllis and her program had on the lives of many individuals in situations like mine, her passion for serving others was beyond admirable and helped me to bring focus to what I wanted to do in my professional life. After sharing with Phyllis that I had an interest in social work, which she has an extensive background and knowledge in, she supported me by allowing me to provide needed services directly to clients of the Straight Talk Program. My participation with the Straight Talk Program and Phyllis serving as a mentor and friend at a time when she was most needed drastically changed my life. Phyllis has a passion for changing lives and does it a non-judgmental way she reminds others that mistakes cannot define an individual’s life and that through hard work and positivity anything is possible.
I am so thankful that Phyllis came into my life at the time that she did. She is a woman of wisdom with a spirit of giving that has changed many lives. Today Phyllis continues to encourage and motivate me to be the best version of myself and I continue to be grateful for her in my life.
-ShaRissa Grey, MSW
|Posted by [email protected] on August 25, 2019 at 12:35 AM||comments (155)|
Hello, my name is Desiree Jones, I recently graduated summa cum laude from Abilene Christian University with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. I am currently attending University of Texas, Austin School of Law. With my law degree, I first plan on working for a law firm and gaining much-needed litigation experience. Then I plan on serving the minorities of my community through becoming part of an association like the NAACP or the Innocence Project. I personally have already benefitted from the Straight Talk Program as a mentee and am also a second generation to my mother who was also a mentee in the Straight Talk Program. This program has already been a huge blessing in my life with the support that I have received. I want to thank Phyllis P. McNeal for her dedication and support throughout this process. She has been working hard to get me the much-needed funds for law school, along with a great word of advice and encouragement. I can’t wait to be able to give back to my community and make change in the way that she has.
|Posted by [email protected] on July 30, 2019 at 6:25 PM||comments (70)|
The Straight Program is forever forging onward and striving to leave no-one behind. It's founder Phyllis McNeals' dream is to reach out to those with challenges and help them to realize their God given abilities, gifts and potentials and create a pathway to a better way of life. "The Journey Begins from Within." The Straight Talk Program helped us by providing the tools and resources needed to overcome our challenges and achieve success in life. "When It comes to the worth of self, the only one in control is YOU."
- Julie Jones
|Posted by [email protected] on July 30, 2019 at 6:25 PM||comments (340)|
My name is Marissa Jones, and I have the pleasure of having Ms. Phyllis McNeal being directly involved in my life since my early teenage years. I am now residing in Sacramento, married with three kids and running our family business.
Nothing comes by luck in life, and me and my mom were blessed to meet Phyllis through a mutual friend on the tournament circuit. As a kid that had tremendous drive to win, and motivation to want to reach my full potential, my current fighting skills were nowhere near what I felt inside they could be. Being a quiet and shy kid, my mom knew there was something we had to change. Along came Phyllis McNeal, open arms, spending evenings after work, Saturday mornings, Sunday afternoons with this little kid she didn’t even know and dedicated countless hours to training. Although, our sessions were physically grueling, the mental lessons that she was teaching me are priceless, and to this day I have continued to instill in my children.
Karate, back when I was a kid didn’t seem to be the coolest thing to do as a hobby. So imagine how mortified I would be twice a week, to have to go to a recreation center and train in front of other kids! Did Phyllis care, nope! Her concern was making me out to be the best fighter in my age group regionally and nationally. At various times through the pain of being kicked too hard, or punched in the eye when rules stated “No head contact”, she was right next to me, “SUCK IT UP!”. This is a saying that has stuck with me to the present day. This is the attitude I carry in my heart when times seem too overwhelming and no end in sight. I can only try to express in words how much of a positive influence she has fully had on my life. This small show of appreciation that I am trying to convey had no measure of the real impact that is felt.
Days that she dedicated to training me, seemed to be just another private karate lesson at the time. Looking back as an adult, that was far from the case. The discipline, respect, and work ethic that was bring taught at the time and not directly communicated, has helped shaped a strong, confident wife, mother and manager!
|Posted by [email protected] on July 30, 2019 at 6:20 PM||comments (21)|
I got out of prison in 1994 and was referred to Phyllis McNeal from my parole officer in Inglewood Ca. I was skeptical and didn’t think that there was a single thing I could offer to her program : Straight Talk. Yet, I was surprised to learn how valuable my message and my past experience is to any youth who is going down the path I have lived. I'd never considered intervention before until I was introduced to the Straight Talk Program. The program offered me reassuring skills to many youth the questions on how to make it on the inside of incarceration to reinventing their new way of living upon getting out. It’s been very rewarding in giving back to the community and especially to at-risk youth who need to know that someone cares and that they not alone. The STP has kept the drive in me over the 15 plus years to continue to keep reaching out my hand to the youth. I’m truly grateful for Ms. McNeal and her program and helping me to become a help mate in a society I once took advantage of.
|Posted by [email protected] on July 30, 2019 at 6:20 PM||comments (359)|
When I joined Straight Talk, I wondered what I had to offer to anyone, since I was an ex-con and a recovering drug addict. Then I began to speak out. I realized that this Program was one where I could use all of my negative experiences to help the kids know how “not fun” the end result of committing crimes could be.
I also came to realize that through talking to the kids, it gave my life purpose and I began to heal and forgive myself. I became whole again and was able to grow emotionally, which allowed me to develop a renewed sense of purpose.
Without Straight Talk, I would still be sulking and ashamed and never moved from living in self pity to being a proud citizen of my community!!! I learned that I am valuable.
|Posted by [email protected] on July 30, 2019 at 5:45 PM||comments (17)|
For Our Panelists: Our panelists participate in their own rehabilitation process. They are able to strengthen their own moral character as they begin to see themselves as a catalyst for positive change in the lives of others.
For Our Audience: By listening to real life experiences, Straight Talk educates communities about crime and incarceration; thus, removing the mystique and glamour that entices individuals into a lifestyle of drugs, gangs, and other anti-social behaviors.