Sandria Watkis Madden investing in at-risk youths
Sandria Watkis Madden has one passion, and that is to make a difference in the lives of those who need it the most.
Watkis Madden’s primary focus is behaviour modification.
With Clarendon having more than its fair share of crime and violence, she said that as a citizen of the parish, she is dedicating her time, resources and talent in assisting at-risk youths.
“I believe there is hope in spite of all the negativities taking place in May Pen,” she told THE CENTRAL STAR, highlighting a student she worked with as one prime example.
“Javin Lewin was a student of Foga Road High who was suspended twice for varied infractions. He used to get angry with little or no provocation and used to think that he has the responsibility of defending everyone in his circle by pushing violence and starting fights with those he claimed violated him or his friends,” Watkis Madden said of her protégé.
Lewin later confessed to her that seeing the stress and pain that he was causing his mother had him doing some deep thinking.
He finally accepted the help he was receiving from the school intervention behaviour modification programme he was enrolled in.
Lewin is currently enrolled in an evening HEART programme at Lennon High School, where he is doing welding.
He also volunteers at her foundation – NISSI (Nurture, Inspire, Support, Strengthen and Improve) Youth Empowerment Centre where he tries to motivate at-risk youths to make positive choices.
Watkis Madden said Lewin is one of the many youths with similar stories of being misguided, angry and needing someone to put them back on the right track.
“I have been there with a lot of the angry youths, but inside they are confused, and seeking acceptance, and it is this belief that sees me going and making an impact through NISSI here,” she said.