Danny Builds Confidence in Herself at Parks in Focus

Being a part of Parks in Focus has helped Danny feel more comfortable around others. Not only has Danny come out of her shell, but she has also formed new friendships with different kids throughout Newaygo County in the program.

Parks in Focus is an outdoor youth mentoring program. Kids like Danny go on outdoor trips to connect to nature through photography while also receiving additional support from TrueNorth staff and volunteers. Having this added support system has helped Danny better connect with those around her.

“The program has helped me get out of my comfort zone,” says Danny about the impact being in Parks in Focus has had on her life. “Before I was in Parks in Focus I used to get really nervous around people, but now that’s kind of calmed down and I’m not really nervous.”

The new experiences Parks in Focus provides helps Danny leave her comfort zone in a safe environment. Many of the other kids have similar experiences as Danny and are able to grow together throughout their time in Parks in Focus.

Dawn Dechand, a long-time volunteer for Parks in Focus, has seen Danny’s growth throughout the time she’s known her. Even in the week-long trip, Dawn saw Danny build confidence and become more comfortable with everyone in that short period of time.

Dawn says, “Danny definitely gained in confidence and being herself…You definitely saw Danny get comfortable and having meaningful conversations with people as the week progressed.” Having time to build relationships while experiencing new things with the other kids has enabled Danny to grow throughout the six months she’s been in the program. 

Click here to learn more about Parks in Focus and TrueMentors.