Joshuah, a high school senior, is the first Club youth from the Little Earth community to be nominated for our Twin Cities Youth of the Year award. He has worked hard his entire life to make healthy decisions for himself and his community.
Growing up in a struggling household, Joshuah witnessed his loved ones suffer addiction and poverty, and he promised himself that he would strive to take a different path. “I felt that I must be destined for something else, something better than being consumed by the drugs and violence that my community and loved ones struggle with,” he explains.
At a young age, Joshuah turned to the Little Earth Boys & Girls Club and found a safe space and positive role models. Over his 11 years at the Club, Joshuah developed strong leadership skills, respectful behavior, responsibility, and confidence.
Today, Joshuah is a star player on the Little Earth Red Bears basketball team and is a highly ambitious student. After falling behind in his sophomore year, he returned to school for his junior year and took on extra coursework to catch up. Now a senior, he is on schedule to graduate on time. He is the first person in his family to graduate, and he plans to attend college next fall.
“There’s something that I achieved within my story of survival; I became a pioneer,” he says. “A lot of people stay stuck in survival mode and that’s what I won’t do. I want to challenge everyone to get out of that survival mode and pioneer to great lengths.”