*This essay was the winner of the JAG essay contest. Students were asked to write about how they could give back to their community in a meaningful way. Congratulations Dashonta and thank you for sharing it with us! Please enjoy Dashonta’s submission, completely unedited for authenticity.
When I become an adult I plan on giving back to my community by volunteering to be a Big Sister in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program. When I was in elementary school my mother signed me up for a Big Sister because I was the only girl out of the three boys she had. Having an older female mentor in my life changed my perspective on a lot of things. It helped me grow up to look at other females point of view in many areas of my life. I plan on volunteering to be a Big Sister to provide guidance, respect, encouragement, and self confidence to a young girl alot like myself.
Guidance is a major key in life; it helps people be successful. My Big Sister taught me how to look at my mistakes as a lesson learned. I want to bring that same positivity onto the young girls like I was once before. Young girls struggle with help because they feel as if they don’t need it but, in all reality everyone needs help. As a mentor to young girls I can show them that it is okay to ask for help and to not be ashamed because they need the extra help with something. My mom was a single mother with a full time job and with her having all boys I often felt left out. When I got to know my Big Sister I appreciated her alot for everything she did with me.
Respect can help you be wonderful in life; you just have to stick to it. As a young female you always have to have respect for yourself and others. Young females think that people just owe them respect without them giving it back. Young females don’t have respect for themself because no one was around to show them the right way. I could teach the young females so much about respect, just a simple “Yes Ma’am” “No Ma’am” will go a long way. My Big Sister taught me that you have to have respect for yourself and others to get through life. She never led me in the wrong way. If I was to get in trouble by a teacher she would make me write a paragraph explaining how I was sorry and explained what I would or wouldn’t do the next time. I took her words and stuck with them because I saw that she was trying to help me be the best person I could be.
Encourning is the best thing a person can do to help someone get through things. The young females have to stay focused and steady to accomplish anything in life. My Big Sister always kept me on track. She would give me advice and I would take it. If anything I learned how to be there for other people. Me becoming a Big Sister to a young female would be a great thing. I would always try my hardest to encourage rather than sports, classes,and friendships. I would be honoured to do it all just to see the outcome for the young ladies.
A lack of self confidence is what makes young girls insecure with anything they do. I want to teach them to find peace with everything they do. Young females start their life out wrong with issues within themselves, they think in a weird way for starters. A young girl is so smart but she is afraid about what people are going to say about her so she failed her test on purpose. These girls shouldn’t want to do that just because they’re scared of judgment. I want to teach the young girls that it is okay to wear glasses, dance, sing, be smart, know more stuff than other people. My Big Sister always made sure that I had self confidence and it helped me so much.
Majority of what I’m trying to say is that young females need more role models like myself and others. I could teach the young ladies so much about everything and I will love to give back to my community by doing that. I look to helping young females as a gift. Everyone’s parents can’t stick around 24/7 because of jobs and many parents have other kids that need special attention. Young females need role models in their life before it’s too late for them like it was for other females when they were that age. I would also bond with the girls by doing their hair because I plan on going to Cosmetology School. While I am attending school, I would be developing more hair skills while helping the young females, too. It would be great for me and the young girls to bond in this special type of way. I would never take them for granted. I will always be a listener to them and push them in the best way that I can.