After joining JCI just over a year ago I love having the opportunity to look back and see how far I’ve come and see what’s happened. After joining from a sponsored place I wanted to make the most of being sponsored with plans to attend every event and do everything possible to make sure that I was worth sponsoring. However my nerves got the better of me the first two months. I was too shy to attend events and put my face out there. Not the type to say “hello” to someone I didn’t know. I was the type of person you saw at events with a phone in hand desperately searching for an app to use, an email to send or anything to make it look like I was busy so I didn’t look as scared as I actually was.
After getting to grips and making the first step to attending events I started making friends and slowly started getting a little more confident each time. Fast forward to now and it’s amazing to see how I’ve changed and how much JCI has helped and supported me. JCI has given me the confidence to go to a country I’ve never been before and have an unforgettable time in Malta for JCI European Convention 2014. JCI has helped me have the confidence to start up my own business as part of my university placement designing and creating custom clothing. I’ve met some amazing people and learnt some invaluable new skills on courses such as JCI Presenter and JCI LEAP where I was able to learn more about myself and others. Thanks to the Networking Wednesday events I’ve been able to make some fantastic contacts. Some of which have become great friends. Thanks to the networking confidence and my contacts I’ve now become a Meadowhall Fashion Blogger and have recently visited the New Look store to talk about their new men’s range. Being able to win awards like Best Member for Sheffield and Yorkshire is cherry on top.
I could talk forever and make a list pages long full of reasons that JCI has benefitted me and things I’ve attended but there are the small things too that JCI has helped me with. Such as being able to talk to new faces and put myself forward for competitions. Attend local, national and international events. Just being more confident to be able to think to myself that “I can do this”. I’m not too shy anymore and it’s thanks to the JCI support and I can’t thank everyone enough. Without JCI I wouldn’t have grown as much as I have ad I just know that the next 20 years I have within JCI are going to be a ride of a lifetime.
Thank you JCI!
Categorised in: Charity
This post was written by Mark Smith