From Risk to Resilience
We initially met Antwon through our Christmas outreach that serves prisoners’ children. In 2007 he attended our summer camp through the Breakaway scholarship program for underprivileged kids. At that time, he was 9-years old.
Since that first year Antwon has never missed a summer camp! As a young adult, he now serves on our junior staff.
Growing up with a parent in prison means that, statistically, you already have a 70% chance of ending up in prison one day yourself. That’s what statistics tell us. But statistics also reveal that when a youth attends a summer camp for at least three years or more, social resilience and positive outcomes are realized.
In Antwon’s world, this meant that two statistical trajectories must collide and something would have to give.
Growing up with a parent in prison was just one of Antwon’s disadvantages. He also lived in a community deluged with youth violence. He admitted that it was hard sometimes to even walk down the street in front of his home where bullets had been known to scour. To dodge the mischief around him, he tried to stay busy with academics and athletics.
Antwon has long benefited from mentoring relationships that were born out of his summer camp experiences with Breakaway. He’s had caring adults that took him to church and youth group. He attends Bible studies and has served with Breakaway’s neighborhood outreach in under-served communities. In 2014, he got to do something that most prisoners’ children would never imagine was possible: GO ON AN OVERSEAS MISSION TRIP.
In 2014, Antwon was part of a Breakaway missions team that traveled to Germany to lead a gospel-centered baseball camp for youth and children. Antwon’s responsibilities included teaching baseball skills to children, managing sports equipment, and organizing activities while serving alongside of an adult leader in Bible discussion groups.
“My lifelong dream is to become a coach either in football, basketball, or baseball and this would be a huge step toward that dream,” Antwon said during the trip.
Today, Antwon is in college, pursuing a career in sports management, and serving as a positive role model for vulnerable children. He knows what God has brought him through and is eager to share Christ’s message of salvation with others. Antwon is a living example that any kid can truly ‘breakaway’ from a difficult past and learn to give back to their community when afforded consistent mentoring relationships and opportunities to serve.