Terrel Stokes

“Activism means to stand up for things that you believe to be true and speaking out when you see something that is clearly wrong, no matter the cost to yourself.”

 

Interviewee: Terrel Stokes

Interviewer: Jenny P., Grade 12

Interview Date: February 12, 2015

Interview Location: Cradles to Crayons, Brighton, MA

 Student Reflection:

Terrel Stokes started working for Cradles to Crayons in November of 2007. Prior to joining the team, Terrel had a summer job painting schools and then interned at Cradles to Crayons. For part of his childhood, Terrel was homeless, relied on alternative housing, and received help from Cradles to Crayons, making his involvement with the organization that much more special. It’s empowering for him when he helps others, especially giving help to the children who are going through the same challenges he went through. A usual day for him is having a morning meeting with staff, meeting with different volunteer groups, working with volunteers making the kid packs, and doing more office work on the computer. A memorable experience for him was four years ago when Cradles to Crayons had a backpack drive and they had cardboard boxes in a truck that needed to be unloaded and recycled. Despite the pouring rain, him and his coworkers pushed through and were able to stuff all of the cardboard boxes into the dumpster with smiles on their faces and a sense of purpose behind their actions.

 

“I really want to help people, not just people like me, but people in general.”

“My mom has inspired me to do this work, that sacrifice for other people. She will go without and I think that instilled something in me. I may not have as much as other people but I am still better off than others and I still can help.”

“All I had was a gap sweater…It was really cold in Winthrop.”

“There are many reasons why their is still poverty…the income gap…equal education.”

“Activism means to stand up for things that you believe to be true and speaking out when you see something that is clearly wrong, no matter the cost to yourself.”

“We give them an incentive to help their families.”

“I stress equality, its a give and take.”

“You can always do more.”

“If they see a problem like income, learn about it first, and find like minded people like yourself.”

“We are all here for the kids and we all want to do good for them.”