Junior Youth of the Year – Mariana Urbina’s Speech

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The Boys & Girls Clubs of North County means many things to me. My name is Mariana Urbina and I am in 8th grade this year at Potter Jr. High. You could say I grew up in the Club because I have been a Club member since I was in 1st grade!

The Boys & Girls Club means FRIENDS. Some of my best memories of Boys & Girls Club are of spending time with my friends. We bond over talking about school, and hobbies, and helping each other solve problems. At the Boys & Girls Club, I learned to put myself out there and be proactive in making friends. I love connecting with others and the Boys & Girls Club is a great place to meet my peers.

The Boys & Girls Club means OPPORTUNITY. Although I really enjoy spending time with my friends and having fun, the Boys & Girls Club gives me a lot of opportunities to explore new things like sports and art. My favorite activity is Nail Club because I can express myself by creating unique nail designs.

The Boys & Girls Club means SPORTS. I was on the volleyball team this year and I also was the scorekeeper for the basketball games as a club service activity. I played girls’ basketball last year and I plan on trying out again this year. In the past, I also played indoor soccer with the Boys & Girls Club.

The Boys & Girls Club means ROLE MODELS. I love the wonderful staff I’ve met over the past eight years. Miss Marcy is like a big sister to me, and I always have fun when I am with her, even when I am helping her with paperwork. Miss Marcy inspires me, and I want to be as confident as her when I grow up. Mr. Jesus taught me to be hard-working, and he told me to always follow my dreams. My greatest influence is Miss Jamie. She always manages to keep track of everything at her job and she keeps a positive attitude. She taught me that even if I am having the worst day ever, if I can find a little bit of happiness, then everything will be okay.

At the Club, I learned the importance of school. Because my parents work so hard, they don’t have time to help me with homework. The staff at the Club help me do my homework and help me study. I know doing well in school is important for my success. In the future, I want to go to college at Yale University and study to be a doctor. I want to become an oncologist because I don’t want people to suffer and be in pain. I also want to have a house full of dogs; they make me happy.

When I grow up and look back at my time with the Club, I’ll remember how lucky I was to have a safe place that inspired me to try new things and become friends with many kinds of people.

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