Train 16 Minority Youth in Health Careers in DC

by Latin American Youth Center
Vetted
All of the new THP youth!
All of the new THP youth!

Dear Friend,

 

I’d like to take this opportunity to introduce you to our new cohort of Teen Health Promoters. These 15 new participants are now joined by one senior teen health promotor, Claudia, who will act as a mentor and leader to the other participants. See below for a letter from Claudia about her love of the Teen Health Promoters (THP) program:

 

During the fall of 2016, I was involved in a rewarding program which was the Teen Health Promoters. Through THP, I was able to develop social and communication skills because I was able to meet many people and give presentations. In this program, I was also able to learn basic clinical skills that will be beneficial to me because I want to pursue a career in the medical field and having knowledge on these techniques will be helpful in nursing school. I was capable of educating teens about sexual health and health issues and how they can prevent themselves [from getting STIs]. This program opened many doors for me because, I was able to get an internship at Unity HealthCare clinic and in the clinic I shadowed doctors and learned what the medical field will be like. It was a huge exposure of the medical field which gave more motivation and aspiration in accomplishing my goal as a health professional. I have been given so many opportunities as a Teen Health Promoter such as interning at Unity HealthCare clinic and being able to intern at the school of medicine of George Washington University during the summer of 2015. As of today, I am a freshman at Trinity Washington University majoring in Nursing also a staff member at LAYC as a  Senior Teen Health Promoter in which I am able to give back to my community and facilitate everything I learned  in the past to  the new participants and also contribute new ideas for the program. I appreciate The Teen Health Promoters because it allowed me to strengthen my biggest weakness which was public speaking and the exposure made me more motivated in achieving my goal in becoming a health professional. I wish to inspire many more students who have aspirations as well and be a role model for them as well. I appreciate everything that The Teen Health Promoters and staff member Nicole Conner has given me the opportunity to be a part of.”

 

We are so excited to have Claudia back to serve as a senior health promoter for our THP youth. Meet some of our new cohort members below!

 

Now, more than ever, our programs that serve youth of color are on shaky funding ground. If you believe that youth like Claudia and the new THP youth deserve opportunities, consider asking a friend or family to donate to this program. Thanks so much for your continued support.

 

Gracias,

Lori

JahWill
JahWill
Biyeshia
Biyeshia
Enna
Enna
Mykel
Mykel
Elizabeth
Elizabeth
Destiny
Destiny
Alexis
Alexis
Diamond
Diamond
Jocelyn
Jocelyn
Gloria
Gloria
Ermyas
Ermyas
Ruby
Ruby
Perpetua
Perpetua
Brenda
Brenda
Cindy
Cindy
THP student Vanessa at her DC HAPP internship.
THP student Vanessa at her DC HAPP internship.

Dear Friend,

LAYC’s Teen Health Promoters (THP) program affords our amazing youth some incredible internship experiences. See below for a letter from THP participant Vanessa, on THP and her internships:

"THP has been a very fun and motivational experience for me during the course of the 2015 - 2016 school year. In this program, I was able to learn new things that I didn’t know before on different health topics such as STI, HIV, abstinence, sex abuse, vital signs, fitness, and nutrition. I also got a chance to practice performing CPR. In addition, I was surrounded by my peers who were like my brothers and sisters to me because they taught me a lot and they wanted to pursue a career in the health field just like me. THP not only gave me knowledge and motivation, but it also gave me an opportunity to work as an intern at George Washington University Hospital as well as join a summer program called DC Health and Academic Prep Program (DC HAPP).

During my internship at George Washington University Hospital, I was able to meet with health professionals that worked in different units in the hospital. These health professionals gave me tours of their units where they taught me about what goes on in the units, the medical equipment or rooms that they use, and how their daily routines work. I was also given an opportunity to talk to their patients as well as practice using basic medical equipment. This was a very interesting experience.

DC HAPP has been a very inspirational and enjoyable experience for me during the summer course. Various health professionals came to give a lecture on the health career that they work in, including a nurse, anesthesiologist, physical therapist, and pediatrician. These lectures gave me the determination that I needed to figure out what health career I wanted to pursue in the future. Furthermore, in DC HAPP, I was given the opportunity to get a real-life hands-on experience with different health skills, such as performing CPR again, intubation, suturing, and vital signs. I was also able to see and feel real body organs such as the heart and lungs. It was all a very exciting and fun. But above all of this, I got the chance to wear a White Coat which was an amazing thing because it made me feel like I was a real doctor (which I’m actually not). I would never ever forget the good times that I had in these programs because I have learned so much in such a short amount of time and done great things that others my age had never done before and I am so thankful and grateful to those who made THP possible for me and my peers to join this program. May God bless you all!!!"

Thanks so much for your support of Teen Health Promoters and youth like Vanessa. Our new crop of students will begin their THP journey in the next month! Please consider donating to support these youth. Just $45 outfits a young person like Vanessa with her own set of scrubs.

 

Gracias,

Lori

Students learning suturing.
Students learning suturing.
Vanessa and friend at their DC-HAPP internship.
Vanessa and friend at their DC-HAPP internship.
Carmen, with her award!
Carmen, with her award!

Dear Friend,

As you know, our Teen Health Promotors program is filled with amazing youth who are amazing peer educators. One such youth, Carmen, just won the DC Department of Health's award for "Outstanding Peer Educator of the Year." See below for her nomination letter, written by staff member Lily Gage.

 "It is with great pleasure that I nominate Carmen for the DC Department of Health/HAHSTA Outstanding Peer Educator of the Year. Carmen is a member of LAYC’s Teen Health Promoters (THP) Program, and her contributions to this program are unparalleled. As part of this program, Carmen completed our Sexual Wellness Advocacy by Teens 11-hour curriculum. Through this program, she has learned not only facts about sexual health, but also how to be an outstanding peer health advocate and educator. 

Weekly, the THP students fill out process logs, documentation recording conversations with peers, friends, and family about the health topics we discuss in class. I am continually impressed with the discussions Carmen records and shares. Not only does Carmen go above and beyond with the quantity of discussions she has with others, but the depth of her conversations far exceeds what I would expect from a high schooler. She has discussed, with friends and family, everything from sexually-transmitted infections to what it means to be transgender. 

During the THP application process, all the students are required to denote whether they would rather do a clinical or peer educator internship. Of all 15 students, Carmen was the only student who indicated that she wanted to pursue the peer educator internship. For this internship, Carmen has spent the last two months meeting with the Teen Health Promoters Coordinator to work on her facilitation skills and become more comfortable with our Sexual Wellness Advocacy by Teens curriculum. Last week, she successfully facilitated a workshop on reproductive anatomy at Anacostia High School. 

Carmen exemplifies all of the qualities of a good peer educator. She is knowledgeable, understanding, nonjudgmental, communicative, and well-spoken. She is comfortable discussing difficult topics and does so factually, with respect and tact. Carmen is responsible, engaged, asks questions related to whatever health topics we are learning, and is always willing to volunteer and speak up. 

Finally, Carmen went above and beyond her role in THP when she filmed and edited the Teen Health Promoter’s video submission for the 'Check Your Risk' video contest.  I have no doubt that Carmen will go on to do great things as a peer educator and health advocate."

 Thank you so much for your support of amazing youth like Carmen. Please consider donating monthly to support this program, and to create more outstanding peer educators!

 

Gracias,

Lori

Carmen (back left) with the other THP students.
Carmen (back left) with the other THP students.

Links:

Kenia, at the first THP meeting.
Kenia, at the first THP meeting.

Kenia joined LAYC’s Teen Health Promotors (THP) program to pursue her dreams of a career in medicine. A bright student and motivated person, Kenia was excited to learn how to perform vital signs and to become CPR certified. She shared with THP staff that she wanted to learn how to take basic vital signs because she hopes to teach her peers how to take control of their own health. She commented, “Some people are not aware of their health issues until they go see a doctor. Learning how to provide vital signs at home will help individuals keep track of their health.”

Kenia became CPR certified through the Teen Health Promotors, and is now ready for her spring internship at a local medical clinic.

Kenia and the other THP youth ran a recent THP event, “Don’t Catch the Love Bug”, an annual event that teaches their peers about healthy relationships, sexually transmitted diseases, and overall health and wellbeing. All of the activities, from the workshops, to yoga, to vital signs checking, were planned and facilitated by THP youth. Over 60 youth were in attendance. Kenia was able to demonstrate some of the vital signs skills she has learned to her peers, fulfilling her wish!

Kenia is now one step closer to accomplishing her goals. Thank you for your contribution to the Teen Health Promotors. A donation of $100 provides CPR and First Aid training to a youth like Kenia. 

 

Gracias,

Lori Kaplan

Kenia and her peers learning CPR.
Kenia and her peers learning CPR.
Learning CPR steps.
Learning CPR steps.
All the THP youth, fully certified!
All the THP youth, fully certified!
Jordy during THP.
Jordy during THP.

Jordy, a senior in high school, reflects on his experience in the Teen Health Promoters (THP) program:

“THP is by far the best experience that I have ever had. It not only helped me learn new clinical skills, but also taught me how to apply them in a health related environment. I was given the chance to volunteer at a clinic which I would have never seen myself doing until I got to medical school. We were also able to create projects that had the purpose of promoting a healthy lifestyle in our community. Through these projects, I was able to work with a great team composed of teenagers and my program coordinator. I was very shy at the beginning of the program, but soon I was able to learn how to communicate with others in a better way. Now I am more confident in myself and have definitely strengthened my passion for a health career.” 

THP was able to launch Jordy to new heights. Not only did he participate in the DC Health and Academic Prep Program, outlined in the last report, but he is now part of the White House Leadership and Mentoring Initiative. We are so proud of Jordy and his journey, as well as the new crop of THP youth! Currently, there are 14 high-school-age youth who have begun this year’s THP program. Stay tuned for news on their educational journey as they explore health careers. Thank you for your contribution! Every donation expands the opportunities that these driven youth can access.

 

Gracias,

Lori Kaplan
President & CEO

Jordy presenting at George Washington University.
Jordy presenting at George Washington University.
Jordy in his lab coat during an internship.
Jordy in his lab coat during an internship.
 

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Organization Information

Latin American Youth Center

Location: Washington, DC - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.layc-dc.org
Project Leader:
Colleen Muse
Washington, DC United States
$3,784 raised of $4,500 goal
 
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$716 to go
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