Making an Impact Daniel Futral's Spiritual Internship Experience with Younglife
February 20, 2022
Hello, for those reading this I hope you receive a bit of insight on what it would look like to intern for such a great organization and group at Younglife Tustin. To paint a little picture, I met Alyssa Burgess (my internship advisor and the area director for Tustin Younglife) about seven years ago when we were both volunteering at Woodleaf Camp in Northern California. We instantly became friends, and she was the first person I called when I moved here four years ago. Since then, I have been leading along side her at Tustin Younglife and it has been nothing short of incredible. The reason I bring her and this up is to point out one fatal flaw in so many work place environment. Excluding the job I am currently working at, my bosses have been the biggest problem at my work places. This could not be less true at Tustin Younglife. Alyssa is the best boss you could ask for, she isn’t just some laid back person who doesn’t care, or someone who is incredibly overbearing and mean. Instead, she is a boss who immerses her self into the work, communicates clearly and often without being overbearing, and she is incredibly selfless. She is the type of person who will drop anything if you are in need, and that aspect doesn’t change, even as a boss. Below is a picture of Alyssa (middle), Kristy Fox (left), and Jon Fox (right), this was take at our banquet for the year. Younglife is a nonprofit organization that runs through volunteer leaders. Jon is a leader along side me and has been serving Younglife for well over twenty years, Alyssa over ten years, and Kristy over twenty years as well.
An internship at Younglife might be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life. Even though there are paid internship opportunities, I wasn’t paid, and didn’t do this for the money, but for the emotional, spiritual, and mental value Younglife offers. It is also a place where people don’t just leave, but stay committed for many years. I am only twenty two years old and have already been involved in the organization for nine years now. I am still pursuing positions at Younglife after all of these years because of how much it has truly improved my life in about every facet. In Younglife, you get the opportunity to serve and just lend an ear to high school students, middle school students, college students, teenagers and young adults with disabilities, teen moms, and more. I am sharing all this with you because people have a very large misconception about what it looks like to volunteer, work for a nonprofit, or even just help/ be there for people who need it. Our society has put such a large weight on this type of work and life. I want to give you the insight that volunteering is one of the most rewarding things you can do. I know I said that in the beginning of this paragraph and noted that it is not rewarding because of the pay. It is rewarding because you have the chance to impact so many lives and impact these lives in a big way. Pictured below is my friend Jeremy, and I met Jeremy five years ago when I was volunteering at a Younglife camp in Northern California. I haven’t seen Jeremy since this picture was taken, but we still talk on the phone every week. A phone call once a week for me is really not a big deal, but for Jeremy, it quite literally makes him scream with joy. Interning with Younglife gives you the opportunity to make this type of impact. The work is simple, the people you work with are some of the most incredible people you will ever meet, and impact you will make will last a life time.