Juanita Mendoza knows what it looks like to change the story...
Her story began 23 years ago when she joined Wells Fargo Bank and began volunteering with her local United Way. When Juanita moved to Midland in 2014, she immediately got involved with United Way of Midland as a donor and volunteer because she knows the impact the organization has in the community.
A few years back, that impact hit even closer to home when her son was nominated to participate in XY Zone, an initiative created by United Way of Midland and Communities in Schools (CIS) that targets young men ages 15-18 who are struggling to stay in school. “A lot of times when we talk about at-risks students we tend to immediately label them as bad kids. My son is not a bad kid, he is just quiet and sometimes we forget that the quiet kids need help too. By working with XY Zone, it really helped bring out the leadership skills in him.”
What her son found at XY Zone was more than just a school program; he found hope, a place to belong, and a great mentorship. “I want people to know that CIS provides support to all students. My son had the support at home, he just needed a sense of belonging and that is exactly what XY Zone provided for him.”
Thanks to YOU and Communities in Schools, Juanita’s son has a bright future ahead of him. He graduated high school and is currently attending college! However, her story doesn’t end there. Juanita continues to volunteer and give to United Way to help change the story for young men like her son and many others in Midland.