Thank you to our after-school program staff! Our programs at Mason and Mallinckrodt are thriving!
Volunteer Profile: Junior Yabwana
The newest volunteer for New Dimensions, Junior Yabwana, has been in the United States for eight months. The nineteen-year-old is from Congo DRC and he said this summer it was hotter in St. Louis than it was at home in Africa. While living in St. Louis has been an adjustment weather-wise, Junior fits right into the St. Louis soccer scene.
He’s been playing soccer since he was four years old, which is pretty common in Africa. “Everybody in Africa plays soccer,” he said. He started a team at home called One Hundred Percent and was a captain for the team. He made a team in St. Louis called Umoja where he is also a captain. Junior wanted to get involved with New Dimensions not only to teach kids to play soccer, but to help them become better people. He wants to take his talent and teach others find themselves on the field.
“On the field, your other self plays,” he said. He thinks teamwork is an important skill on and off the field, as is communication and the way players talk to each other. Junior wants to encourage players to keep trying when they are discouraged. He thinks it’s important to learn from others and practice.
Junior’s favorite soccer team is Real Madrid and his favorite player is Di Maria. He usually plays midfield. He also sings in a choir with his siblings at a Burundian Church. He hopes more kids will continue to get involved with New Dimensions and urges parents to spread the word about the organization.