Meet Our Community with Johairah
Why did you join CfY?
I joined CfY because I constantly heard my friends talking about their plans with their mentors or family group. I felt like I was missing out on a good experience, so I asked them if it’s worth joining since I was busy with other activities after school, and they said, “Absolutely! It’s a great program and they have food!” When they mentioned food, I knew I needed to give it a try. It was the best decision I’ve made, not because of the food, which is amazing, but because of the people there and the great support given to those who needed it.
How has the experience changed you?
CfY has impacted me in a way which has given me the strength to open up to others. Before CfY, I wouldn’t be able to speak up for what I believed in. I would keep all my struggles and secrets inside of me, unable to trust even my family or closest friends. However, joining CfY has allowed me to meet all these amazing people and know their own personal struggles and how they’re similar to mine. Every time I’m with CfY members, I have a sense of safety and security I can never get anywhere else.
What’s your most favorite memory of CfY?
The best part of my time at CfY was the session where we had a space to open up about anything we’ve struggled with. I don’t think I’m allowed to get into details but there was a certain rawness to the stories we’ve told that represented what we felt deep down in the bottom of our hearts. During that session I truly felt human. I felt the support from everyone in the room. There was no judgement, only empathy. It was during this time that I knew I could trust others again.