Equipped for Success
A senior at Cranford High School in Cranford, New Jersey, Blake O’Donnell is looking forward to starting college. With all of the changes that occur when beginning the journey to adult life, she will have many new educational and social challenges ahead of her. But, perhaps without realizing it, O’Donnell has had special preparation for this time since elementary school, when she began participating in the Lions Quest program.
Rounding out her education for life
Lions Quest is Lions Clubs International Foundation’s positive youth development program for kindergarten through 12th graders. The Lions Quest program provides teachers with tools and strategies for teaching students age-appropriate important life skills and fostering character development. Students around the world like O’Donnell are learning key qualities such as responsible decision-making, creating positive interpersonal relationships, resisting peer pressure and engaging in community service.
Now that she has been through the Lions Quest program, O’Donnell considers it to be an invaluable part of her school experience. “If I didn’t have the Lions Quest Program, I wouldn’t be who I am now. My confidence is…greater than what I thought it was going to be. It has helped me be confident in decision-making with everything. I’m able to make friends better because of it. Without the program, I probably wouldn’t be involved with school activities or organizations.”
More confidence for the future
Lions Quest not only helps students learn to work together, handle difficult situations and develop self-esteem, but it builds skills that will be crucial to their success in the future.
“I definitely learned organization skills, and it will help me a lot with college courses and homework. It will help me get along with new people and live with a roommate I don’t know,” said O’Donnell.
And importantly, the service-learning activities O’Donnell participated in through Lions Quest laid the groundwork for a lifetime of community involvement. “When I’m older I know I’m definitely going to give back because it just feels really good.”