We are watching local leaders grow right before our eyes! This past summer, Angy and Jason both joined the Kids Club Local Leader team. What makes us especially excited to have them is that they are both former Kids Club students. We began our relationships together while they were in elementary school, and it’s been incredible to watch them grow into Local Leaders.
We have also been encouraged as we hear them talk about parts of the program that they remember from their youth – and how it impacted them.
Angy remembers how much she learned in family room. She is excited to be a part of teaching our kids about God’s love for them, just like her former Kids Club leaders taught her.
“My expectations coming into the job were to have a great working environment and also be able to grow in my faith. I believe things have been similar to what I have expected. The work environment has been great and I have been able to see many new things through faith,” says Angy.
Though she will tell you that speaking in front of people makes her a bit nervous, her supervisor Ms. Marissa has noticed Angy’s growing confidence when talking to her students, “She sets good boundaries and expectations around their behavior, and follows through in setting safe limits for them.”
Angy sees this as the fulfillment of one of her goals, “I have seen this accomplishment on my behalf. I have been able to build a bond with a few of our kids and that is a huge accomplishment for me because that is one of my big goals.”
Working with children has helped her prepare for her goal of becoming a nurse after she graduates from college. She is currently studying Nursing in her first year at NOVA.
“I hope to gain skills on how to work with children and how to be able to communicate with them,” says Angy, “This will help me in my profession specifically because I am interested in being a nurse in the pediatric department. Working at Casa for the past two months has influenced me into wanting to work with children in my nursing profession.”
Jason has bonded with boys in Kids Club as a role model who looks like them and understands their story and life in Chirilagua in such a personal way.
Ms. Marissa says, “Him playing soccer with them absolutely makes their day, and you can tell they feel really special that someone like Jason would spend time with them doing something they all love.”
As a student in his first year at NOVA studying to become a Police Officer, Jason sees this position as a chance to grow, “Some accomplishments that I hope for are to build a relationships with kids and help them out with anything they need help with. Some skills that I hope to gain here are being able to talk and understand the children’s feelings. This will help me in my future profession because sometimes police officers work with children and maybe have to help them calm down or talk to them about a situation.”
Ms. Marissa sees his relationships with students at work in the classroom, “I have noticed that Jason doesn’t shy away from the challenge of classroom management. Though it’s something he’s never done before, he utilizes tools he’s been taught. He asks his teammates for advice and receives feedback so well.”
When asked about the work atmosphere at Kids Club Jason says, “Everything’s up to what I expected: a great atmosphere, having fun with the kids and my team, and creating new bonds. We’re a great team with a lot of different personalities. I love working with them.”
Angy and Jason both come to work fully motivated and attentive to each student. By choosing to be present every day, they show us that they are committed to developing relationships which help kids feel honored, safe, and cared for. This in turn will lead to transformation in their lives and in our neighborhood.