Hi everyone! My name is Cara and I am the Friendship Fellows coordinator here at the Friendship Circle. As the summer wraps up, I wanted to take a minute to reflect on my own experience with the Friendship Fellows program and share how meaningful it has been for me personally. I know you will miss hearing from the Fellows this week – but don’t you worry, they will be back next Friday! Hope you enjoy my story:
Two years ago I chose to move from my home of North Carolina to accept a position working with the Friendship Circle through an AmeriCorps program. Although I was hoping for a life-changing experience, never would I have expected just how much joining the Friendship Fellows team would alter my world. As a newcomer to the city who knew no one in Pittsburgh at the time, I relied heavily on FC to honor its namesake and provide me with some meaningful friendships of my own. My relationship with all 12 Fellows quickly started to blossom, and two years later I can confidently say that these individuals are some of the best friends I have ever had.
The lessons I have learned from the Friendship Fellows have made an immeasurable impact on the person I am today. Max S has shown me how valuable it is to be a face in the community that everyone knows. From Michael L I have learned that laughter truly is the best medicine. Lexi V continues to teach me how to center myself, and do things that make me feel good. Cece R has taught me that confidence is the key to success. Michael S has reminded me that nothing brightens up a day quite like a good old antic. Andrew G has shown me that trust builds the foundation for great relationships (and that there is never a bad time for a snack!). Josh K has given me the gift of having a friend who never judges me for embarrassing myself. Hannah B has shown me that hard work and dedication makes a BIG difference in the lives of those around you. Amanda D continues to remind me that a good sense of fashion and a kind heart go a long way. Davis M shows me each week the value in being happy to see someone each time your paths cross. Brendan C has not only given me knowledge of the best pranks in the world, but has also reminded me how important it is to always have fun… and lastly, Jarrod E has shown me that even though this world is unpredictable, having a good friend to get you through the bad times makes all the difference.
To each of these individuals, thank you for making all the difference in my world! You have given me a friendship circle to call my own. <3