My name is Shane McDermott, and I am the Founder of Kids Second Chance. This is my story, and what led me to start Kids Second Chance. Our mission is to focus on our youth and their future. Too many of our youth are falling into problems with alcohol addiction, drug addiction, trouble with the law, and many other issues. Having been down that road myself, and making it to where I am today, I thought I would be a good advocate for helping troubled teens find the right path back to being a productive member of society.
My journey began over 40 years ago. Fighting through the problems of a broken home, a broken family, addiction to alcohol and drugs, I found myself right in the middle of becoming nothing more than a new statistic. A troubled teen running away, breaking the law, using alcohol and drugs…that was the story of my life from the age of 15 to 27. In 1997, I returned to Texas to start a new life. My focus was on becoming a new man, getting my college degree, landing a professional job, and eventually becoming a husband and a father.
The problem was that I had no resources other than my own determination to make this happen. I was able to make it on my own with the support of my family and friends. But I am one of the few. I remember back in 1997 the recidivism rate of people getting out of trouble and returning to that life was about 70%. That means that only 3 out of every 10 people that get in trouble stay out and return to being productive members of society. Those odds did not sit well with me and I wanted to make sure that I was one of those people that turned my life around and never returned to those dark days of my past.
My journey took me through obtaining my college degree, starting my own business, marriage and kids, returning to a life of Catholicism, and yes also dealing with my past and obtaining an unconditional Pardon from the Governor. Yes, that last sentence is correct, I returned to my roots and was able to show that I had turned my life around and become a good man. I had to show that the past 23 years of my life have been nothing but hard work, dedication, faith, love, and a never-ending drive to make up for my past. And yes, I have two Unconditional Governors Pardons to prove that these two Governors had the faith to forgive me and restore all of my rights as a citizen of our great nation.
I have had so many hold my past against me. For the most part I have kept it to myself. The people that needed to know I told. Many close friends have no idea, but probably always wondered. Many family and friends know about me and my story. Now it’s time for me to share my story with some of the most important people in the world that need to hear it… other children that are facing the same situations that I did. Maybe, just maybe, I will get through to a few of them so that they can have the same opportunity to turn their life around, just as I did. That is what this is all about, making a difference in a young life so they know that dead end road they are facing can be reconstructed into a one way street back to being a law abiding and productive member of society.