AmeriCorps Member at Porter-Leath Reflects on Impact

Children need strong, consistent relationships with caring adults that help build confidence and life skills. They need Generations, the home for AmeriCorps members and AmeriCorps Senior volunteers at Porter-Leath. Generations helps to fill the gap, bringing children in need together with adults in a mutually-beneficial service experience. AmeriCorps is not just a volunteer program, it is a program full of opportunities. This fact was especially true for Jasmine Joyner. As an AmeriCorps member, Jasmine knew she would learn to develop her teaching skills, while giving back to her community, but what she did not know was how much of an impact the children would make on her. One of her favorite and most memorable moments during her service term was working with one of the children who was very shy, reserved and rarely verbal. Jasmine began researching lessons and activities that would engage this young girl to help her feel comfortable in expressing herself verbally and in developing her language skills.

Jasmine saw little outward progress but continued to diligently engage with the child. One day as the class was getting ready to go outside to play, the young girl grabbed her coat and walked right up to Jasmine and said, “Help with my coat please.” Those were the first words Jasmine had ever heard this young girl say. “It was not much, but it filled my heart with joy,” said Jasmine. She learned that day that to have faith in continuously investing in children because one day that investment will produce fruit. Porter-Leath AmeriCorps members provide enrichment
within the classroom to children who need additional assistance to reach their language and literacy milestones. Over the course of their service term, members help to increase the literacy scores for children to help them become kindergarten ready.

If you or someone you know has a heart for education and would like to engage with children through a 6, 9 or 12 month service learning position, contact us today at (901) 577-2500 ext. 1128 or our Generations webpage