(WSVN) - Being a teenager in this day and age may be harder than ever before, but one program is putting teen girls on the right track. The nighteam’s Nicole Linsalata has this story of “Hope and Healing.”
Anabell Vasquez, runner: “My name is Anabell Vasquez and I’m 13 years old.”
Livia Benoit, runner: “My name is Livia Benoit and I am 13 years old.”
Saia Amarilla, runner: “My name is Saia Amarilla and I am 13 years old.”
And although these girls were once strangers, they have something in common — dealing with being 13 years old.
Nicole Linsalata: “What do you think the hardest part about being a girl, a teenaged girl?”
Livia Benoit: “Trying to fit in probably.”
Saia Amarilla: “Some of us girls don’t think we could do anything that we would want to do because of the way that we see other girls do it, ’cause they can do it much better than we can. So our confidence goes down.”
So these girls are taking those feelings and leaving them on the track. It’s called Girls on the Run, an international program to help girls 8 to 13 build confidence in strength.
Anabell, who lives in North Miami, needed that last year.
Nicole Linsalata: “What was going on in seventh grade?”
Anabell Vasquez: “It was just like everybody was more judgmental. They would curse at me and stuff, so it was kind of hard.”
Nicole Linsalata: “What did you do?”
Anabell Vasquez: “I would cry. I’d cry a lot.”
She would even cut herself.
Anabell Vasquez: “I guess it’s just a way to release all the stress inside.”
Now getting out on the track, running, breathing, sweating, helps them release all those emotions in a different way.
Coach: “We have a lesson where ask the girls, ‘What was the one thing when you woke up this morning that make you angry?’ Let’s jog around the track, and we’re gonna scream, while running around a track. By the end of that one lap, they were laughing, they were giggling.”
It has also given Livia and Saia their own ways to work out their own dilemmas.
Livia Benoit: “I get to talk it out, like I don’t feel shy. I feel like I have friends to talk to.”
Saia Amarilla: “I don’t care what other people think. It doesn’t matter what they say.”
All that matters is friendship and getting stronger — step by step.
Anabell Vasquez: “It’s like you think about all those problems and then you stop, and you take a breath, and you’re all right.”
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