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Bryan completed his volunteer hours and found his passion as a bonus

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Bryan is a junior at Booker High School who has been a proud member of the Boys & Girls Club for the past seven years. He spreads positivity wherever he goes with his infectious smile, caring heart and helping hand.

While Bryan has participated in nearly every program the Club has to offer, he is most interested in activities that impact a person, nonprofit or community. In fact, Bryan just recently participated in our 7th annual Alternative Spring Break. This free program invites all local high school students to spend the week of Spring Break volunteering for local causes while building their resume, networking with a diverse group of professionals and earning community service hours. This year, Bryan was one of 46 teens who collectively dedicated 425 volunteer hours to nine different nonprofit partners and community sites. (Click here to read the full recap.)

"This was my third year with Alternative Spring Break," says Bryan. "The program has opened my eyes to how many nonprofits there are across Sarasota County. Each one is unique in the way they help the community."

Through Alternative Spring Break, Bryan found the meaning of giving back.

"To me, giving back means working together to strengthen our community," he says. "You can have a lasting impact!"

Alternative Spring Break has helped Bryan build critical employability skills such as collaboration and time management.

Bryan (right) worked closely with his friends to complete tasks for nonprofits during Alternative Spring Break.

"I've learned how to work better as a team, like when we cleaned up Potter Park with Sarasota County Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources," he says. "I also learned self-management, having to be ready to roll up my sleeves each day. Devoting my time to multiple tasks at once was a challenge, but I did it!"

Bryan says his most rewarding experience with Alternative Spring Break was at Senior Friendship Center, a nonprofit organization that serves older adults in four counties across Southwest Florida and empowers them to live active, healthy lives.

Bryan's most rewarding volunteer experience was at Senior Friendship Center.

"I loved volunteering with Senior Friendship Center and spending time with the adults!" Bryan says. "We did all kinds of activities that promote a high quality of life from intergenerational discussions to dance lessons. The ladies loved dancing with me and taught me life lessons that I will never forget."

Bryan sees himself taking the skills he learned through Alternative Spring Break to his next chapter in life at college.

"I always want to be involved and give back to my community," he says. "I plan on becoming a dentist. When I have my own office, I want to provide free check-ups to those who need it."

Bryan is just one of the many Club members whose vision for their future inspires us to invest in the programs that help them achieve their goals.

Do you see yourself making a difference like Bryan? Discover how you can give back through our volunteer programs. Click here to learn more and apply.

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