Random acts of kindness are extremely powerful. The impact of an act of kindness can have a lasting impression on the giver and receiver. The 20th Circuit Court, Juvenile Services Division’s Lighthouse Girls Residential Program had an opportunity to witness with one special act of kindness by a special young woman.
The Lighthouse Program is dedicated to offering female-specific treatment and support for girls ages 12-17 involved in the juvenile justice system. The girls involved in the Lighthouse program are offered opportunities to explore new skills to learn and apply to their future. They are challenged to think outside the box and gain new skills that allow them to enhance their self- esteem and enrich their daily lives. The girls are connected with a mentor/volunteer from the community to learn the necessary skills and practice a challenging new asset/skill.
One Lighthouse resident took this opportunity a step further and created a special meaning to her learning experience, while also showing others how she could create her personal act of kindness.
Kelly (not her real name) challenged herself by learning physical fitness skills. Each week she worked with her mentor to understand proper technique and was able to develop and practice sets of exercises to help her grow in her skill. In addition, she worked hard with Lighthouse staff to organize a sponsorship program that encouraged others to help her meet a goal by raising $500 within ten days which would be donated to an organization that has been inspirational in her life; she wanted to advance services to those in need. At the conclusion of the ten days, Kelly was excited when she discovered she had exceeded her financial goal by raising $550 through her hard work.
Upon completion of her challenge, Kelly presented those funds to the executive director of Bethany Christian Services, Steve Eckert. Kelly also individually designed and painted a donated wooden chair to place in the lobby of Bethany Christian Services as a reminder of the impact that Bethany Christian Services has made in her life and others.
This Lighthouse graduate was not only able to give back to an organization that had an important impact on her life, but also, she was able to feel a sense of pride that these gifts were provided through her hard work. An immense thank you to the 20th Circuit Court, Juvenile Services Division staff members for supporting Kelly’s goal to pay it forward to Bethany Christian Services. The impact of this act of kindness brings warmth to this holiday season and is a good example of the care and support the 20th Circuit Court, Juvenile Services Division staff offer the population with whom they work.
Submitted by Michelle Anguiano