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Posted on August 26, 2013 by Rajanae and Ciara
About the bloggers: Rajane is 19 years old, and a three year Youth Leader for Rise N’ Shine. Ciara is 18 years old and a Youth Leader for AFG’s Rise N’ Shine summer camp.
Rajane: I was a member of the Rise N’ Shine summer program since I was four years old, and grew too old to attend. So I decided to join as a Youth Leader. This year was my third year as a Youth Leader. Each year gets more exciting. This year we had a ton of swimming trips, and we even went go cart racing. The classes for the girls were awesome; basketball, gardening, yoga, cooking, arts and crafts, fashion design, movie making, and a lot of other fun classes. Personally, I like that we even help the girls with their reading and writing skills while having fun. Rise N’ Shine also helps the Youth Leaders with leadership trainings, CPR, and with working on a team. Rise N’ Shine was a wonderful experience for the young ladies, youth leaders, and the facilitators. I believe we all gained something from this summer.
Ciara: Working at Alternatives For Girls was a great experience. I got the opportunity to mentor and have fun with young girls who are still discovering who they are in this world. I got the chance to make someone smile, help them take a risk, and watch them grow. I got a chance to work with my peers and grow as an individual. Taking every step with these young girls along the way and helping them feel comfortable with new obstacles was the greatest experience I had while being a youth leader at Rise N’ Shine.
For some of you,
your first day was very scary and overwhelming.
Like your first day of school, too many new people.
And every morning that you came to Rise N’ Shine you were nervous, really sleepy, and cautious.
We just wanted to show you that it’s okay to explore,
It’s okay to open up, play, laugh, and want more.
It’s okay to be afraid, and it’s okay to have fun all day.
Life will sometimes throw lemons your way,
make the best out of the bad and drink lemonade,
like you did here every day at lunch.
The smiles, laughs, cries, dances, rainy days, funny faces, field trips, games, and friendships,
will all be a part of your memory
leaving you all doesn’t seem real to me.
As you move forward onto to your school year,
remember that your never alone, even when you think you are.
Remember it’s okay to take risk and try new things.
If you continue to grow and be yourself,
Life will always bring new things.
The world is waiting on you, go explore and spread your wings.