Intervention Specialist, Caught in the Crossfire
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Intervention Specialist Livier Martinez seems to spend pretty much all her time helping others. When she’s not supporting young, violently wounded Oaklanders get back on track, she’s making people beautiful, as a makeup artist and photoshoot stylist. A recent graduate of Cal State East Bay, with a degree in psychology, Livy plans to pursue her masters in counseling. The youngest of 10 children, Livy grew up in Visalia, in the Central Valley, where gangs and violence were part of the fabric of everyday life. She says she sees many of the same risks and barriers for youth in Oakland as she did in Visalia. Young people growing up in violent communities can be reluctant to open up about their problems and their fears. But when a client does open up, says Livy, that’s where the rewards are, that’s when you know you have earned a person’s trust. That’s when you know you can begin to help them build a safer, healthier life. Livy Martinez spends a lot of time doing just that.