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From the Streets to Success

While some kids don't always like what mom or dad is cooking for dinner, they don't have to worry about where to find their next meal. Elizabeth Murray grew up with drug-addicted parents and often didn't have warm clothes or food. "It would be common for me to go into my kitchen and see my parents shooting drugs into their veins," Elizabeth told 20/20. "When they were done, there would be blood spots all along the walls from where they had missed veins."

When Elizabeth was 10 she found out her mother had AIDS. A few years later, while most teenage girls were worrying about what to wear, Elizabeth was looking after her Mom, who's AIDS had become full blown and were complicated by tuberculosis. Her Mom died at age 41 in 1996.

At 15 Elizabeth was homeless. Her mom was gone and her dad was on the street. After her mom's death she knew things had to change and she knew it was up to her. "I connected the lifestyles that I had witnessed every day with how my mother ended. And if there was anything I could do about it that would not happen to me. So I went back to school. But mind you, I was homeless," explains Elizabeth.

Her high school didn't know Elizabeth was homeless, not that she cared. She took an extra load of work, studied on the stairs and made excellent grades. When she read about a scholarship offered by The New York Times she quickly applied and won. She will receive $12,000 for every year at college. Elizabeth was determined to go to Harvard and the university didn't turn her down.

Right now Elizabeth lives with her little sister in New York while she waits to become a full-time student. She isn't too sure what she wants to major in yet but plans on pursuing theater, film and literature. She's working at the New York Times right now and they offered her work for the summer. Elizabeth has gone from homeless to Harvard.

Do you know any amazing kids? Is there anyone you think Kidzworld should profile?

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    Dear Dish-It in the forums

    Tati-00
    Tati-00 posted in Family Issues:
    I would also talk to them and tell them how you feel. If they still say they are signing you up for the membership as a 13 year old and it scares you that much I would just tell them to leave you off the membership until you do turn 13.
    reply about 2 hours
    Tati-00
    Tati-00 posted in Family Issues:
    I think every house has some drama going on in it everyday. In my house my Mom is a divorced mother of 3 kids. My older sister is away at college but when she was here there were yelling matches between my mom and her about staying out too late and getting a speeding ticket. Also with my mom being the only one raising us she has to work full time leaving me to watch my little brother who is 10 after he gets home from school. There also can be some battles that go on there and my mom doesn't want to here it from me or him when she walks through the door after work. I just try to not make it all personal and chalk it up to the stress of everyday life.
    reply about 2 hours
    american_brit
    "Tati-00" wrote:I would tell your mother no. I mean she shouldn't be like a dictator and force it on you. I hardly wear any make-up and my mom loves that.
    reply about 3 hours
    Tati-00
    Tati-00 posted in Family Issues:
    I would tell your mother No. I mean she shouldn't be like a dictator and force it on you. I hardly wear any make-up and my mom loves that.
    reply about 3 hours
    american_brit
    Hey! Yeah, I'm also one of those girls who doesn't wear makeup either... maybe on a rare occasion? Or if pestered into it.  I definitely understand where you're coming from with this. My mom doesn't exactly try to get me to wear it, but is she did, I wouldn't be to happy out this either. Don't feel bad. You're beautiful no matter what; makeup doesn't  define you -unless, of course you let it...  She probably wants you to feel "more grown up,"  or thinks it's nice for a "young lady," or that'll "boost your confidence." I don't know, there could be plenty of reasons.  If you feel uncomfortable the best thing to do would be to talk to her about it. Respectfully tell how you really feel and make sure she's listening. 
    reply about 3 hours

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