Today is #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving. City Year AmeriCorps members emulate this spirit of giving year-round by helping students build the social-emotional and academic skills they need to succeed and supporting students in reaching their full potential.
Here’s how our City Year AmeriCorps members make a lasting impact on students across the country.
Manny, a young student in Providence, lives with anxiety because he was accidentally shot during a gang altercation when he was six. Manny's anxiety gets in the way of his ability to learn and caused him to miss school on occasion. City Year AmeriCorps member Justin Roias works with him regularly and have formed a strong bond by spending time together playing basketball and walking the halls together. This relationship helped Manny open up to other peers and teachers. “He motivates me. He’s the best person I ever met in the world…I have no other people like him…that’s always on me, pushing me,” Manny told the Christian Science Monitor. “Ever since I met with Justin the first time, it was a big difference for me. I felt like he cared for me.”
“I feel like City Year is a great group of people who help students become better people and overcome their insecurities,” Amanda*, a 9th-grade student said. “City Year [Miami] is cool, understanding, outgoing, motivating, active, positive and intelligent. They teach us to be ourselves.”
Amanda is a bright student. In our small-group learning sessions, she is eager to share her answers to questions. It’s great that she’s ready and willing to share what she knows. However, it doesn't always give other students the opportunity to share their knowledge. Currently, she is working on embodying a “no one speaks twice until everyone speaks once” attitude. Through the coaching and support of her AmeriCorps members and her teachers, she is growing more respectful of incorporating her classmate’s voices to ensure that everyone has been heard.
"My first thought of Jared* was that he was an entertainer. His awkward smile and corny jokes made me laugh from day one. He was a natural comedian. I immediately knew that I'd found a kindred spirit in this child. Like all the children City Year works with, Jared had his own set of struggles. His weren’t with academics though. He struggled with organization, absences and tardiness,” a City Year Cleveland AmeriCorps member said.
"Melanie* is one of our very spirited fifth grade students. In the beginning of the year, Melanie would often get upset with herself while completing school work. She felt especially frustrated with math work. She struggled and gave up on herself quickly. Despite her challenges, Melanie always has an undeniable, vibrant energy. She is enthusiastic about school and is a very involved student in the classroom, recess, Extended Learning Time, Playworks activities and, of course, power greeting with City Year [Los Angeles].”
This #GivingTuesday, be part of creating powerful mentoring experiences.
Your gift will help students across America believe anything is possible.
*Names changed to protect student privacy