David came to his first Open Roads program when he was in elementary school. "It was a Junior Mechanic program at Peace House.. we learned to use tools and then I came to a bunch of Fixapalooza bike repair programs for the next few summers. That's how I really got started."
In summer 2017 he completed his first official Earn-a-Bike program. Shortly after, he applied and interviewed to join the Open Roads Youth Advisory Board. He is now an active serving member. He earns a stipend of $20 per month to attend meetings, advise staff, plan events, and more. He volunteers at programs on almost a weekly basis to act as a role model and mentor for younger students. He shows them the ropes and puts the tools in their hands. His next step? Apprenticeship. He plans to apply and be an Apprentice in 2018. Check-out his interview below:
What does it mean to have a voice on the Youth Board?
"I feel it means that I have a say on what goes on in my community. So far I've gotten to be a leader at programs and come up with the official Open Roads Diversity & Inclusion statement. That's all about having a voice."
What are some social skills you've learned here?
"Managing myself by staying calm and keeping quite and walking away and counting to ten. Breathing deep. Two things in my control are my behavior and my words. Also to apologize- you have to say sorry, admit you were wrong and ask how you can help fix it."
What are your goals?
"To become successful. Get through school and get good grades. Have a good life and get a good job so I can make money. Make choices that help me succeed."