Tori Nied ’19, Gettysburg –
Before I first started the Heston Fellowship, I did not realize how many public service programs were available in the Gettysburg community. As the summer progressed, I discovered how much each of these programs actually benefit their participants. Here are two stories that I would like to share from this summer:
I have spent a great deal of time working with the farmers market each week and through this, I have had the opportunity to hear different people’s experiences with the food programs. One woman was thrilled that she lost 37 pounds since the start of the Healthy Options program. With this program, she had the opportunity to purchase healthier foods at the market, which meant preparing tasty, nutritious meals with lower calories. The bonus is that she feels better about herself and is thus a reflection on this program. Every week she excitedly explains how thankful she is for the opportunity she was given.
Another example comes from a girl at the 21st Century Summer School Program, where I’ve had the fortune to build relationships with some of the migrant students in the area. This girl told me that she is grateful for the summer school because she made her closest friends there. The program puts her in touch with others who face similar challenges. She, like many of the students, has returned every summer and plans to do so until she graduates high school. A wonderful fact about 21st Century is that it brings together different school districts which gives the kids a chance to meet other students their age in the surrounding area. So not only does the program provide summer education, but it also had made best friends.
Those are just two of the many stories I have heard from people who are appreciative of the programs offered in Gettysburg. This summer fellowship has helped me develop relationships with community members which has made an impact on their lives and my own. Whether it is in a big or small way, every program affects every person on some level, which I find extremely rewarding.