Teen Lets Her Guard Down, Puts Trust in Mentors

Things weren’t going well for Carla. She was a teen who was often out at night, walking around town, and getting in to trouble. She was fighting at school. She didn’t deal well with authority.

Even when she was invited to join her local Music Clubhouse, it didn’t get better right away. Carla and two friends who joined with her simply “didn’t know how to work with others without escalating to screaming and fighting,” says her Music Director.

But the mentors at the Music Clubhouse don’t give up on their youth. During the first few weeks, staff followed up on Carla’s behavior throughout each day. They found out that Carla loves singing and dancing. And so they helped her prepare for performances at the Club’s open mic nights.

With each subsequent performance, Carla built up her self-confidence. She was even part of the Clubhouse’s first music video for which she co-wrote an entire verse with the help of the Club’s Youth Leader.

As she became more involved in the music program, Carla’s behavior improved. “We were able to show her that we are reliable, caring adult figures in her life,” says her Music Director, “And Carla slowly became more polite and one of the better behaved members of the Club.”

Carla’s tremendous strides extended well beyond the walls of the Music Clubhouse. She started fighting less often at school, and opened the door to high academic achievement. Report cards that once said things like, “struggles to behave and respect authority” now said “understands the material very well.”

Carla’s experience is a real-life example of the power of music, the power of mentorship, and the power of a teen who is ready to turn her life around.