SHINE 4 Education begins with the concept of equal opportunity and the lack thereof in neighborhoods without it. A tale of two cities, Elijah Hernandez experienced the unique contrast of living in Fresno, CA but moving forward with his education in Clovis, CA. Fresno (2016) experienced a national violent crime rate and national crime rate over 50% higher than the nationwide average each. Many children are either forced to stay inside or be exposed to a world of crime. Desperate to get out, Hernandez was left with very few options. He, like many other kids experiencing this same dilemma, became an athlete. This passion grew as he traveled miles on end throughout California. An injury left him unable to compete and he found himself back to square one.
The sudden stop allowed for a recollection on his surroundings and his upbringing. “I looked around and realized I was one of the last kids from my neighborhood who was in high school. I felt entirely alone in this experience of making it out and found myself representing an entire subsection of forgotten children”, says Hernandez. Utilizing the resources found in his robotics program, he would create outreach projects to teach over 1000 children principles never shared with him as a child. His outreach would take him from Houston, Texas to 7000 miles away in Laos. He would eventually be able to speak to Governor Jerry Brown and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on these accomplishments. In fact, he would even have the opportunity to present Schwarzenegger the 1,000,000th solar panel made in California. Elijah Hernandez was committed to life.
SHINE 4 Education is a a volunteer organization committed to providing children outlets to follow their passions - without any boundaries. Founded in 2020, SHINE 4 Education is beginning to make opportunities for those involved and for the communities we are impacting. Learn more about upcoming events and progress through our official LinkedIn.
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