Tiffany Nesbit | After-School Volunteer

My mother was incarcerated when I was growing up. I understand what the CPNYC families are going through and wanted to offer my assistance to make their lives easier in any way I can.

Bio: I was born and raised in the South Bronx but currently live in Brooklyn. I’m a fiction, fashion, and beauty  writer; educator; and editor- currently working for New York State. My passions include reading, writing, shopping, and traveling.

Date you started Volunteering:
November 2015

What inspired you to get involved with CPNYC?
My mother was incarcerated when I was growing up. I understand what the CPNYC families are going through and wanted to offer my assistance to make their lives easier in any way I can. I also think I am a good role model and want CPNYC students to see what they can achieve if they break the cycle.

How have you served as a volunteer?
I volunteer once a week, assisting group leaders with homework help and special activities such as art therapy, magic, and dance.

Share your most memorable moment as a volunteer.
For Christmas, CPNYC students were able to pick out two gifts and were featured on News 12. They were so excited that they were receiving more than one toy, and were over the moon when they heard they would be on TV. Their smiles have stayed with me since.

What are some lessons you have learned through this process?
Flexibility is key! It’s good to have a plan prepared for what you’d like to accomplish for the day, but you have to be able to read the room and make adjustments as necessary.

What advice would you offer to future volunteers?
Be open and honest. Children are able to tell when you’re not letting your true self show, and if they don’t feel that you are they won’t allow themselves to open up to you.