Giving Back to the Community One Chance at a Time
Giving Back to the Community One Chance at a Time!
By: Madison Gewalt
Have you ever had a chance to give back to kids in your community? Did you take it? This past year I had the chance to be a junior coach for a Level 2 all-star team at Kay-la’s Gymnastics and Cheer in Boaz. I did all-stars at KGC for five years and have cheered for a rec/school team for eleven years. Having the opportunity to work with girls wanting to achieve the same goals I wanted to achieve at their age has taught me so much on and off the cheer mats. Not only am I able to give back to my community, but I am learning how kids all learn differently, I am making new friends, and I am getting to be a role model for the girls.
Whether you learn by hands on, by listening or by watching, it is all different. I personally like to learn things hands on. I like to be able to actually touch or try the things I am trying to learn. The team I junior coach for is a Youth Level 2 team. Working with these girls has most of all taught me patience, lots and lots of patience. I have learned that some girls take longer to learn things than other girls do. I have also learned how to teach certain things for it to make sense to each girl in a way that they can learn. Every cheerleader on that team is unique and has talents in their own way! My favorite part of coaching is getting to see them use their talents for their benefits and seeing their faces light up when they get a new skill or accomplish a goal of theirs.
Not all of your friends have to be the same age as you. Trust me, I have thirteen friends that are all under the age of fourteen. Some of my best friends were met through cheerleading. This opportunity led me to even more friends. While being their coach I was still their friend. Not only have I been someone for them to talk to about anything they wanted, they have also been pretty good listeners themselves. Being their coach was a blessing in many ways. I have gained friendships worth a lifetime and have gotten to know some really awesome girls!
Most importantly though, I have had a chance to be a role model. I have had a chance to make a difference in a kid’s life. Having these girls look up to me has improved me as an individual. I am more aware of the things I say and my cheerleading skills. I have learned to fix my motions and tumbling from telling them to fix theirs. Nothing is better than seeing their little faces light up when they come off stage after a good performance or at practice after they hit something they have been working on so hard. Nothing makes me happier than seeing them happy with themselves. Working with these girls has given me many reason to try and be the best role model I can be.
The opportunity to be a junior coach for Kay-la’s Gymnastics and Cheer has been a dream of a lifetime. I have learned so many life lessons that I can apply to everyday life. Two of my favorite things in this world is cheerleading and kids, this allowed me to give back to my community while still enjoying the things I love most. Meeting these young ladies was a blessing. They have taught me more than I have probably taught them. So to anyone who has an opportunity of a lifetime, whether it is giving back to your community or trying new things...Take it! The amount of things you will learn from this experience will be a pure benefit.