We Never Stop Learning – by Jacquelyn Tyre-Perry

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As some of you may know, I am the Recreation Specialist for School Age Programming here at the City of Manassas Park, Department of Parks and Recreation. Working with school age kids every day is a tangible reminder of how critical learning is. Even as adults, training and development is key to growth in our careers. Fortunately, the Recreation Services Division recently had the rewarding opportunity to attend various trainings with the help of a grant through Social Services.

I love what I do, and like the rest of the staff here, I welcome all learning opportunities. Even though I was excited to attend the seminar, I could not help but to cross my fingers for a bought of the flu when I heard the words “training” or “meeting.” However, I cannot deny the great value I ultimately end up walking away with.

The most recent training I attended was on Early Childhood Mental Health. I am always amazed at just how much there is to learn about supporting the growth and development of resilience in the kids that we service. More importantly, I have resources and information to bring back to my staff.

Sometimes we forget children of all ages are always evolving as are their needs. There is not a “one size fits all” approach for each child. Our job is to make sure we are equipped with the most resources possible to keep up with those changes and individualities.

To me, the saying that the children truly are our future is much more than a cliché. Being willing to invest in ourselves through trainings, webinars, or workshops is ultimately a huge investment in ourselves. It also impacts the people (or in my case, the children) we serve.  We learn new and innovative concepts to bring out the best in each child. We continue to provide a fun, safe, and professional atmosphere here at the Community Center.  The kids continue to learn, and we feel pride as we see the children accomplish the goals we set.

With all the programs that we offer here at the Community Center, I’ve had the pleasure of watching the kids who come here learn and grow. Over the years, I’ve seen kids go from Preschool to Extended Care to MP3, and I can honestly say it is truly an honor to be here for them every step of the way.

Jacquelyn Tyre-Perry is the Recreation Special for School Age Programs for the City of Manassas Park, Department of Parks and Recreation. She can be reached at 703-335-8872 or via email at J.Tyre-Perry@ManassasParkVA.gov.

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