Tuesday, May 17, 2022
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L.A. Teen Donates Time and Talents to ‘Give Back’ to her Community
By Cora Jackson-Fossett, Staff Writer
Published May 6, 2021

Chloe Jackson (Courtesy photo)

Serving others is more than a phrase to Chloe Jackson. In fact, the Los Angeles teen exemplifies those words both as an outstanding student and a volunteer with multiple organizations.

A senior at St. Bernard High School in Los Angeles, Chloe has been sharing her time and talents with youth and adults for many years. In addition to maintaining top grades, she’s also active in a range of extra-curriculum activities as a student.

She’s a member of the school’s Viking Ambassadors, Associate Student Body, Black Student Union and yearbook staff.  She mentors middle school students by participating in TAKS Leadership group as well as teaching them math and science in her role as a Stem Summit Leader. For several years, Chloe has been a serious athlete, devoting time to soccer, volleyball and track and field.

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As for her main passion, the young lady sincerely states, “I take pleasure in serving others and sharing my experience at St. Bernard’s with my community at large.”  Such dedication may explain why she volunteers with Mothers In Action (MIA), One Incredible Family and My Friends House L.A. along with being a camp counselor with the Girl Scouts of Westchester.

Her accomplishments in scouting include serving two years on the Girls Advisory Board, representing the Brownie Girl Scouts in the Tournament of Roses Parade, and selling more than 500 boxes of cookies for six consecutive years. She also earned the Silver Award in 8th grade and received her Gold Award, which is the highest award that the organization bestows, in April 2021.

MIA president Tracy Mitchell, right, with Chloe Jackson, left, and MIA teen volunteers. (Courtesy photo)

Explaining her joy in giving back to her community, Chloe says, “Being kind, sharing my talents with others, and being a positive role model as a camp counselor is by far one of my greatest experiences as a teenager. Also, I have volunteered with MIA since I was a little girl as well as with other organizations. I enjoy volunteering with MIA because they embody all of the characteristics that I stand for – being of service to seniors, providing leadership and workshops for kids, and helping the very community in which I live.

“It’s so important to give back, lead by example and be a light for those who can’t help themselves,” she insists. “I love [MIA’s] Back to School Health Fair. It is one of my favorite events that I look forward to each year, to see the smiles on the children’s faces when I hand out school supplies is simply priceless.

“Some of my Girl Scout sisters and I spend countless hours working behind the scenes, sorting, packing and assembling packages/boxes for the very kids who I get to meet in person. [It is] such a gratifying experience,” says Chloe, whose zeal for service certainly impressed Tracy Mitchell, MIA president.

Outlining Chloe’s contributions, Mitchell says the teen conducted “outstanding outreach to Mothers In Action’s mentees,” who are ages 8 through 14. Through a series of virtual sessions, Chloe instructed youngsters about various forms of art, from portraits to landscapes.

“Chloe managed to bring out the artistic energy that lies dormant within each individual child. She brought joy, fun, and creativity right to each student virtually, but most importantly, she made connections with our mentees as well as the parents,” recalls Mitchell.

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“Many of the students expressed the fact that they will continue engaging in art after the program ends. Chloe provided all of the art supplies, made beautiful hand painted aprons and gave them an art kit with all the trimmings to continue their self-expression at the end of the program,” Mitchell adds.

Balancing a full schedule of school and volunteering can be challenging, but Chloe says her secret to success is simple. “I apply time management skills and prioritize what needs to be handled right away. I complete my homework, go to volleyball practice, and volunteer after schoolwork is done and on the weekends and throughout the summer.”

Mitchell and teen volunteers prepare to distribute free supplies at the MIA Back to School Health Fair. (Courtesy photo)

After she graduates from St. Bernard’s later this month, Chloe will attend Clark Atlanta University in Georgia and major in Architecture/Interior Design.  Not only does she enjoy designing, but also notes that she wants to “enhance the standard of living and improve the quality of life in my community.” Chloe also believes that excelling in this field will help “address the inequalities of women in an industry where we are the minority.”

Wherever the future takes her, Chloe will likely continue to volunteer her time and talents and she invites others to join her in this endeavor.

“I would encourage young people to find a cause/purpose that they are passionate about and support it. Join, volunteer, support, lead and make a difference,” stresses Chloe.

“It is very important to not only volunteer, but create opportunities where you are able to be of service in a huge way. When you volunteer with an organization that symbolizes what you believe, it’s so heartwarming and more meaningful.”

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