“My mom is picking up a different girl than she dropped off.”
Calle arrived at LEAP in the summer of 2017, a 17 year old young woman, exhausted from a year of chemotherapy and recovering from the trauma of losing her sight to a brain tumor.
That first night, Calle was startled when her Facilitator, Zhenya, asked her to clean up from dinner. Calle objected: “Don’t you know I’m blind?”
Zhenya laughed, “Calle! I’m blind too. We’ll do it together. I’ll show you how.”
Each day at LEAP, Zhenya modeled independence and problem solving for Calle and every student on the LEAP Crew. They were in awe of her optimism, determination and commitment to self-growth.
Zhenya shared with her LEAPsters: “There are no obstacles in life, only learning experiences.”
Three weeks later, Calle wrote a thank you letter to Zhenya: “You have done more for me than I could ever imagine. You have changed my life forever. My mom is picking up a different girl than she dropped off.”