I always knew that I wanted to help people on a greater level but was unsure how. Each year I felt as if I unlocked another stage allowing me to get closer to this. The foundation for becoming a nonprofit professional was instilled in me from a very young age.
I remember growing up and watching my parents, no matter how busy life gets, taking the time to give and raising me to do the same.
In middle school, I remember being a peer counselor and helping my peers resolve challenges through conflict mediation. Believe it or not, these years were rough for me. I also remember a very special teacher who believed in me when I did not believe in myself and how much she helped change the trajectory of my life.
In high school, I got involved with our local United Way’s Drug Free Youth in Town, where I met one of my amazing mentors, who you all have been introduced to, Joe Toliver.
I had the pleasure of working with a fantastic national youth development organization, which allowed me to realize that although it was always there, 1. I love working with youth 2. I love nonprofits. Working for this organization allowed me to realize that I can do what I love daily and help people simultaneously. This is also where I met my Orlando mom, that took me under her wings and guided me.
I shared a few pieces of my life that led me to enter the nonprofit sector, but I could write about many more memories and people that left a lasting impression. One thing you will notice is that many of my memories involve people. Choosing to be a nonprofit professional is rewarding but not always easy. So I say thank you!
You may not see the rewards instantly but know that similar to how many amazing people empowered me over the years; others are watching you that you are inspiring every day.
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou.
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