To provide support for at-risk teens and young adults.
When I was just about 8 years old I made the decision that I wanted to help kids. It was as simple as that. So, with the holidays approaching, and the help of my mother, I made 100 flyers asking for donations to give to kids in foster care. Soon after, I walked up and down the streets of my neighborhood and I left 1 flyer on the front porch of every house. By the end of the week, I had collected a table full of gifts! Soon after, I decided to host the toy drive annually.
By the time I was 12, I was beginning to notice the lack of support there is for older youth in foster care. I would stay up late reading articles, and watching documentaries. I began to learn about the struggles in finding foster homes for teens, about group homes, what it means to “age out” of the system, and youth homelessness. I quickly changed my annual toy drive to an annual Teen Holiday Drive. Every year after that I would collect gifts for teenagers and older youth such as clothing, video games, jewelry, and even gift cards.
When I was 14, I came to the overwhelming realization that I wanted to do more for at-risk teens. So despite my age I started my own nonprofit called Teens4Teens. Teens4Teens is all about teenagers helping other teenagers. We work with volunteers ages 13 - 19, teaching them about youth in the foster care system, and youth experiencing poverty. Together, we provide essentials for at risk youth in Los Angeles. Despite how much I have grown, and how far Teens4Teens has come, my dream is the same dream I had when I was only 8 years old…. To help kids.