You can Change The World
By AmeriCorps Member Gabriella Nunnally proudly serving at H. Grady Spruce High School
Almost everyday I have the wonderful opportunity to wake up and change people's lives through my service with City Year Dallas. On Saturday, October 22, I had another opportunity to do this. At H. Grady Spruce High School, they have launched an attendance initiative called the "Wolf Pack Reach Out,” which involves going to the houses of students who are at risk of dropping out or who have withdrawn from school.
AmeriCorps members in back row from left to right: Liliana Garcia, Dami Saliu and author of this post, Gabriella Nunnally
During our last home visit, I had the special opportunity to talk to a student named CP. I found out that CP* is 15, she has missed over 50 classes since August 22, and she is having a hard time making friends that go to our school, which makes her not want to come. At the other houses I went to this morning, we didn't get to talk to any of the students we were concerned about, but this student was here with her grandmother, who is raising her. Her grandmother was feeling so discouraged about her granddaughter because CP isn't going to school. I spent 15 minutes talking to CP about choices, learning through growth, success, the power of education, changing the world, and being a role model to her younger brother.
This interaction changed my life because no one has ever told this young lady that she has the ability to change the world. That day, I was that person for her. When I left she gave me the biggest hug, and they both thanked me for taking the time out of my day to stop by and really talk to CP. Her grandmother even said that she had a dream that we came to her house in our red jackets. I was meant to be there that Saturday morning, for that conversation. I feel so humbled to be in the position that I am in. I cannot express how moved I feel. I'm only two months into my ten months of service and my outlook on life has changed so much. This past week at school, I saw CP twice in the hallway, and when I told her, “I’m so happy to see you!” her smile warmed my heart.
I'm also thankful for having the opportunity to meet these amazing students and learn from them as well. I'll never forget this moment.
*Name has been changed.