Lauren has struggled with mental health challenges since high school. Her recovery journey has been winding and tough but rewarding. She now speaks openly and with passion about her struggle with bipolar disorder, anxiety and identity crises. She battles those demons every day, and every day her work inspires her to keep fighting for her own wellness.
Lauren is a proud single mom to toddler Grey. He is the light of her life and mothering him is one of her greatest joys. Grey is quirky, adorable, kind, funny, talkative and independent - all of Lauren’s favorite qualities wrapped up into one perfect package, complete with chubby cheeks and a button nose. Without him, Lauren would have never discovered that her true purpose in life is to help youth. She hopes that her journey into motherhood can inspire other young parents to lead happy, fulfilling lives and raise healthy, happy children.
Before coming to Youth M.O.V.E. Oregon, Lauren was a barista, journalist, aspiring foreign policy expert and family case manager for a homeless shelter. She saw YMO as her opportunity to empower young people to live the lives they desire. She believes passionately in the universal right to self-determination and maintains that every youth has the potential to be a loving, caring, trailblazing member of society. Lauren wants to help youth unlock their potential by providing them with unconditional support and trauma-informed care. She painfully remembers the times in her life when people discouraged her from being who she wanted to be and doesn't want youth to take discouragement as anything but a temporary distraction.
Lauren is on the road to becoming a child therapist and is excited to finally be doing what she truly loves. In her free time, Lauren enjoys drinking coffee and eating sugar cookies with her son at his favorite cafe, running and hiking trails with Emma, her three-legged boxer pit, reading, playing the banjo, and building choo-choo tracks with Grey.