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Meet Dakarion Littles, BGCD’s 2021Youth of the Year. He has been a member of the Oak Cliff Club for 13 years. During his time there, Dakarion has truly grown into a great leader and someone young Club kids look up to. For three years now he has served as president for the Oak Cliff’s Keystone Club, a premier teen leadership program. And he is actively involved in Building Industry Leaders and Collegiate STEPS, which has led him to his future college major or career as a civil engineer. He even landed an internship at a prestigious civil engineering firm and is their youngest intern to date.

But life hasn’t always been easy for Dakarion. As a member of the Oak Cliff community, he’s seen his share of violence and destruction. In fact, violence directly impacted his family when his older brother, CJ, was senselessly murdered in 2018. Because Dakarion considered his big brother as a mentor and protector, he was devastated by his death.

But Dakarion pushed through. With CJ’s inspiration and the help and support of the Boys & Girls Club family, he became more engaged in the Club since then.

Learn more about Dakarion:

 

Q: How has being a part of the BGC changed you?

A: BGCD has become like a family to me. The Club was there for me during my toughest moments, like the death of my older brother. Everyone has been so supportive and helped me grow as a leader. 

 

Q: What is the best quality you have learned from being a part of the BGC family and how will you apply it to your future?

A: Some of the best qualities I’ve learned from being part of BGCD are leadership and being comfortable with the uncomfortable. I have a speech impediment, but my Site Director, Ms. Ci’Andria Jefferson, pushes me to speak in front of people. Because of that, I’m now more confident and I have been the Oak Cliff Club Keystone President for three years now. 

 

Q.Talk about the impact your brother had on you?

A: I really admired my big brother, CJ. He introduced me to the Boys & Girls Clubs 13 years ago, and I’ve been a member ever since. CJ always encouraged me and wanted me to be the best I could be. Sadly, he was murdered in 2018. His death fueled me to want to become a leader in the Boys & Girls Club. After that tragic incident, I became more engaged in the Club and I’m actively involved in many programs. 

 

Q: How can you give back to your community?

A: Mentorship is extremely important to me. In fact, I wouldn’t be where I am today without the help of some very influential people. After college, I plan to take care of my family and come back to the Boys & Girls Club and launch my mentorship program.

 

Q.What do you plan to do in the future?

A: I have decided to pursue a degree in civil engineering, which I was first introduced to through the Building Industry Leaders Program. I haven’t decided which university I will attend in the Fall just yet, but because of Collegiate Steps I have been accepted to over 10 colleges and universities! I’m still narrowing my choices, but it’s great to have so many opportunities. 

Like I mentioned, mentors are truly needed in my community. Many kids my age aren’t able to get the proper guidance they need and they end up in the streets. I’d like to implement a “National Mentor Signing Day”, where kids are paired with adults who can provide a great example. You know, kind of like when high school athletes sign and commit to colleges and universities. I want to give back, just like the Boys & Girls Club has done for me.