FYI Welcomes New Board Member: Lauren Spencer
FYI’s newest board member, Lauren Spencer, joined because she realized that her passions line up perfectly with ours.
She is a Cedarville University graduate with a history of helping families. She worked in the Greene County Juvenile Court during her junior year, strengthening the family connectedness and reducing further juvenile delinquency for first-time offenders.
“I really felt like that was my niche, to especially help troubled kids,” said Lauren. She has been a high school counselor in the area for the past 12 years, a decade at Greenon and the past two years at Beavercreek. “I love the troubled youth. They are my favorite kids to reach.
The more problems they have, the more I love them.
“As a school counselor, I see the negative influences they face,” she continued. “I also see how a good education like FYI gives can change their life positively. It is so nice to have FYI in the schools, because we offer strong education and it is faith-based.”
FYI Executive Director Nikki Stefanow says it’s nice to have Lauren on the team as well.
“I’m very excited to have her on the team,” she said. “She’s forward-thinking and has experience working with the same students that we work with. Her hobby is dabbling in social media, which we need help with. She brings a fresh perspective to things, and it is very welcome.”
Observing FYI’s impact firsthand was Lauren’s first step towards serving on our board.
“I’ve seen FYI in action through the years and I’ve been really impressed,” she said. “There was a teen FYI was working with who was pregnant, and her and her boyfriend went through the Parenting Network program and earned a lot of items. I thought that this was so wonderful.
“I would do the student referrals for the Mentoring Program and assign the teens,” she continued. “Then I learned about the Real Life program and how they give so much.”
Still, she wasn’t sure at first about how she could help - a common concern for someone who is considering volunteering.
“At first, I didn’t know what I could offer them to help out,” she said. “Recently I’ve become increasingly weary of the darkness of the world. But I really didn’t know what I could do outside of the ballot box. When I researched FYI, I realized that change in a community starts out small and has a ripple effect that turns into a tidal wave. It’s the grassroots efforts like FYI that make the biggest splash.”
Now she knows what she can add to our mission.
“I do feel like my goals align with what they want to do,” she said. “I really want to leverage my school connections to expand the FYI programming into other school districts. Another area I can help is using my “God job” skills at Medway Church where I am tasked with hosting and interacting with their social media contacts. I try to bring the greeting experience of our church online.
“I want to help increase FYI’s awareness along these lines as well,” she continued. “When people see the FYI tree (logo), I want them to immediately recognize it and know it is FYI and what FYI does.”
Lauren is especially excited about FYI’s new S.T.O.P. human trafficking awareness initiative, recognizing from her vocation as a school counselor the great need for it.
“It’s exciting to be on the front end of that kind of awareness,” she said. “Every educator needs to hear about this and how to recognize it.”
This is Lauren’s first experience as a board member, but she didn’t let that stop her. She has a good mentor at home as her husband Michael is on the board at Medway Church.
“He’s excited,” she said. “He aligns with me when it comes to my morals and values. He is excited to see how me serving at FYI will impact the mission.”
If you feel like you want to help further FYI’s mission but don’t know how you might fit in, please give us a call at (937) 845-0403 and we will help you identify areas of service that utilize your unique gifts.