be_ixf;ym_202403 d_01; ct_50 YES! I want to make a difference TODAY!

Three generations of making better happen

Growing up in South Central Los Angeles, I witnessed a lot in my community: teen pregnancy, homelessness, drug addiction. It scared me to think that this might be my future as well. Thankfully I had role models that showed me another path. 

These role models became my personal cheerleaders and remain two of the strongest women I know. They are my two older sisters. Throughout my high school years, they served with City Year and helped me realize that I could take a different path, one grounded in service to a cause greater than self.  

In college, I decided to work in education and asked my sisters about City Year. They took me on service days, told me about their journey working with students, the long hours, the rollercoaster of emotions, but most importantly, the gratification that comes with knowing how significant our impact can be on students and communities. 

This year I am excited to proudly continue the tradition my sisters started . . . to be the compassionate, dependable and nurturing mentor my students need to realize their own path in life.

Jessica Lazaro is a proud City Year AmeriCorps member serving at Barack Obama Global Preparation Academy in her neighborhood of South Central Los Angeles.

Related stories

Every year, City Year corps members in California are given the notorious yellow bomber jacket that they wear everyday to...

Read more about My Yellow Jacket Story

City Year L.A. has partnered with C5LA to provide college and grad-school application support for current AmeriCorps members. We have...

Read more about Grad School Support for AmeriCorps Members through Our Partner, C5LA

Head of Operations Strategic Planning, Risk & Analytics for Amgen, Nkem Ogbechie, virtually joined City Year Los Angeles AmeriCorps member...

Read more about Meet Our Board Member: Nkem Ogbechie of Agmen

Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Everybody can be great…because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college...

Read more about A Day of Service on MLK Day with CYLA
National Strategic Partners
National Partners