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My name is Tamika West and I would like to take the time to share with you some of my experiences with EOYDC and how the center helped me accomplish some of my goals in life.
It was the summer of 1997, when I was first introduced to East Oakland Youth Development Center. A friend of mine told me that there is a youth center on 82nd and International Blvd that had a gym open to the public, and there were always teens like us playing basketball in the gym. When I first entered the gym I met a man named Kwame Nitoto and he asked me would I like to be apart of his girl’s basketball team that he was trying to organize I said yes, and from that day forward I became a part of the solution.
I also met the director Ms. Regina Jackson, and she gave me an opportunity for employment as a youth leader which I accepted and there I was getting much more out of EOYDC than a game of basketball. I continued going to the Center for approximately 2 years when all of a sudden I stopped going because I started playing basketball for an all-star team by the name of Bay Area Magic and I had no time to come to the Center.
In November 2004 I returned to the Center because I wanted to get something I had been missing in my life for a long time and that was my GED. When I returned to the Center the first person I saw was Ms. Regina and she welcomed me back with open arms. She then introduced me to Ms. Anana Scott the GED instructor and she made me feel right at home. Ms. Anana believed in me and that made me believe in myself. Did I mention that when I returned I returned with my now 9-month-old daughter, and Ms. Anana was generous enough to let me bring her to class with me and was very patient with us.
I went on to take the GED test in February 2005 and on April 7,2005 I received my results back and it stated that I passed. I would like to thank EOYDC for having faith in me and giving me the opportunity to accomplish one of the most important goals in my life this is only the beginning of my success!