Four Stories, Four Paths: Meet Nathaniel
By Nathaniel Jones, ServiceWorks Participant February 04, 2016 01:00 PM
The Citi Foundation “Pathways to Progress Impact Video Series” demonstrates the impact of its U.S. program through the compelling stories of four young people who have participated in the initiative’s four core program paths: civic engagement, entrepreneurship training, mentorship, and summertime employment.
I’ve always found classes and homework assignments to be a lot of fun but I typically kept to myself at school because I was so shy. I dreaded working in groups because I was never sure if I would know the right things to say or that my ideas really added any value.
Then my guidance counselor suggested that I join ServiceWorks, a national program that uses volunteer service to help young people develop leadership and workplace skills.
What you don’t get to see in my video: I underestimated the impact I could have. Before ServiceWorks, I didn’t realize that even small acts can make a big difference—and that I could personally gain something from giving to my community.
When I started the program at their Jersey Cares host site, I got matched with a success coach and skills trainer, who both helped me identify my strengths and weaknesses, as well as my personal and professional goals. I also learned how to work in teams, where communication was key.
ServiceWorks helped me find my voice.
Pathways to Progress is the Citi Foundation’s approach to providing youth with the career readiness tools and opportunities needed to thrive in the 21st century economy. In 2014, as part of our Pathways to Progress approach, the Citi Foundation made a three-year, $50 million commitment to boost the career readiness of 100,000 low-income youth in 10 cities across the United States.