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Game Changers

We are so thankful for the vision founder Rev. Diane Parrish had to start a ministry that serves prisoners’ children, and the many game-changing stories kidz2leaders has been a part of in our 18 years. We’ve included one of those stories below that was featured on Channel 2 WSB’s GameChangers show on Sunday, March 22. 

“Persistent, determined, and self-motivated.” These are the three words that 21-year-old Alexis would use to describe herself, and anyone who has been around Alexis for more than a few minutes would have to agree. Alexis graduated in December from Georgia Southern with a degree in Political Science and Justice Study. For the time being, she moved back home to help her mom take care of her grandmother and work while she studies for the LSATs and decides on which law school to attend. Since elementary school, Alexis has been laser-focused on one goal: to become a lawyer.  The dream sparked when she was on the debate team in middle school, and since then, nothing has been able to deter Alexis from this goal. “I want to be in the court room,” Alexis said.

Alexis began her journey with kidz2leaders at the age of nine in 2004. “I had been to other camps before, but my first year at Camp Hope was nerve-wracking. I was on a bus with a bunch of strangers who were happy to see me,” Alexis laughed as she remembered her first year. Executive Director Nancy Staub has known Alexis since 2004 when she was in Nancy’s cabin as a first-time camper. “She had a big laugh,” Nancy remembers. Alexis graduated to be a counselor in 2009 and since then has served Camp Hope as a counselor for three years and a cabin leader for three years. She also completed two years of the interns4tomorrow program where she worked at various businesses during the summer like Jackson Healthcare, Concord Pharmacy, and The Harwen Group. Looking back, she can see how kidz2leaders has been a source of support throughout her life. “I can see now how The Leadership Training Academy was a stepping stone to where I am now. Those classes helped me get into the interns4tomorrow program which helped me get scholarship money for school, and later gave me the opportunity to apply for the Thomas Elgar Scholarship,” Alexis said. This scholarship contributed to her college tuition.

“It didn’t come easy. I worked really hard to get where I am,” Alexis said. Alexis has worked since high school. Her first job in high school was helping teach World History. Since then, she’s worked at Taco Bell, Firehouse Subs, Chick-fil-A, Cook Out, taught swimming lessons, completed law internships, worked at an FCA Summer Camp, and the list goes on. But, Alexis knew she had to work hard to help her get through school and it came at a cost. “I was a full-time employee and a full-time college student,” Alexis said. “I didn’t really get to enjoy football or basketball games until I was a senior.”

Persistence, determination, and self-motivation. It’s evident that these strengths will help Alexis reach her goal of being in the courtroom and no doubt be a game changer in the lives of others.

 

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