A concrete rose

This past Tuesday, I was afforded the opportunity to accompany the Health and life skills coordinator at the Douglas unit. I was intimidated at first because I am used to working only at one location and working with “my kids” so I really didn’t know what to expect. The Douglas unit is in an extremely impoverished area on the north side. But from the moment I entered the building until the time I left, I felt nothing but love from everyone. We ran a SMART Girls program where we got a chance to talk about hygeine and the girls made lotion. The conversation was not only informative but also quite hilarious. Talking to girls ages 9-11 about their periods, body odors and the infamous “v-word” can be quite the task. The girls warmed up to me immediately and it was so amazing to spend time with them and be able to feel like I am apart of something larger than myself. I truly believe that the information that was given to them that day is something that will stick with them forever and ultimately help them when they least expect it. What I am realizing more and more through the experiences at the boys and girls club is that it doesnt ¬†matter what the actual facility looks like, what the staff looks like or even the kids; what matters most is that effective programming is taking place that allows the next generation to grow. I can’t wait for next week!!



Hello my name is Traci Burton. I am a offically a Senior here at Western Michigan University!!! *ques trumpets* My major is Film, Video and Media studies with a double minor in Non-profit leadership and Gender and Women’s studies. All three of those things seem slightly unrelated but each of them embody who I am and what I would like to contribute to this world. Ultimately I want to change the world. Through television and media, I plan to spread the love of God through inspirational content. I want to eventually own a non-profit and change the funding policies for urban school districts. These are all long term goals; as of right now I am working for the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Kalamazoo as the summer arts academy drama instructor. This has been both a rewarding and trying summer as I learned so much about the politics of non-profits. I will detail these experiences on this blog and hopefully have a chance to look back and appreciate all I’ve¬†gained.