Youth Forward Scholarship Winter 2018 – Making the Last Memories Matter

Name: Millennium Mayo
From: Arvada, Colorado
Grade: 11th
School: Ralston Valley High School
Votes: 0


Making the Last Memories Matter

Throughout my high school career, I have been honored to be a part of some of the most incredible
volunteer opportunities. From my freshman year up until now, I have
worked over 400 hours of service to give back to my community. These
hours have been worked in my local church, 4-H, National Honor
Society, The Boys and Girls Club, feeding the homeless, The Youth
Foundation at Rolling Hills, and many other small events here and
there. Serving others has become a passion deeply rooted within my
heart now and I have grown to truly love it. One of my most cherished
areas of volunteer work continues to be Hoops for Hope. Hoops for
Hope is a nonprofit organization that allows students to host groups
of elderly people with Alzheimer’s Disease in their school to play
croquet with them. After attending one meeting, I knew that Hoops for
Hope was the place I wanted to be. Over the past two years, I have
faithfully attended our after school Hoops for Hope sessions twice a
month for ten months a year! My total hourly involvement in this
activity reaches nearly 70 hours and counting! For my senior year, I
have been placed in charge of our school’s program which has been
my greatest responsibility by far. This program has been one of the
most impactful events I have been able to partake in, though my
biggest challenge has been seeing the sadness and loss the elderly
face. They look deep into their memory banks to spark a conversation
or comment but they hit a brick wall, which is gut wrenching to
watch. Though this may be a sad point, it is always triumphed by the
smiles generated in just one session of croquet! I have learned to
never take a moment of life for granted and to always stay positive
because we never know how long those memories may last.

My lifelong  dream has always been to pursue a career in veterinary
medicine in an effort to give care to clients who may not always be
able to afford pet care. My experiences with Hoops for Hope reignited
one of my original reasons for becoming a veterinarian and that was
for the people. I love taking the time to get to know someone and
brighten in their day in anyway. Hoops for Hope helped me to see the
greater good that lies outside of myself, and how imperative research
for Alzheimer’s Disease is. My desire is for Hoops for Hope to grow
exponentially, consequently raising more awareness for this
debilitating disease. In the next ten, twenty, or thirty years I hope
to look back and remember all of the lives I was able to individually
touch through a simple game. Knowing that even one elderly person
felt less alone or hopeless from my love and affection given would be
more than enough to know that I made a difference.

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