ALEXANDRIA, VA – Yaerelin Molina has been dedicated to Volunteer Alexandria. In the past few years, she has been involved in a number of programs designed to make Alexandria a better place for everyone.
Graduating from T.C Williams High School last month, the 18-year-old told The Zebra that her time with Volunteer Alexandria has been inspiring. She volunteers to help people, of course, but also feels dong so makes her a better person.
“You don’t have to be a superhero to make a difference,” she said. “Simply by writing letters of encouragement can brighten someone else’s day.”
Founded in 1980, the nonprofit serves as a connection for individuals and groups that donate their time to assist local agencies and other nonprofits.
Molina has taken part in efforts to pick up litter in Oronoco Bay with members of the National Honors Society and volunteered at Stafford Hospital. She plans to continue her work with the Rappahannock Council Against Sexual Assault.
People associated with Volunteer Alexandria often serve as peer advocates for Alexandria’s Sexual Assault Center. Molina’s work with survivors has set her path toward the future.
She plans to earn an Associate of Science in Nursing first, and then work on her bachelor’s at George Mason University or Virginia Commonwealth University. Her career goal is to become a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner. According to the International Association of Forensic Nurses, these are registered nurses with education and clinical hours in the forensic medical care of patients who have experienced sexual assault or abuse.
“Working as a Peer Advocate at the Sexual Assault Center has inspired me to continue to educate, guide, and support those who have been a victim of sexual assault and/or domestic violence,” Molina said.