Marlon Robinson is a 10th grader at Phelps Construction and Engineering High School and has been at Life Pieces To Masterpieces for eight years. For him, Life Pieces is more than an after school program: “My father died when I was young, so for me the mentors are father figures. There is a place for me at Life Pieces.”
Life Pieces is not only a place for Marlon, but for his younger brother Avonté, who is also in the program, as well as their mother, Angel, who has worked as a Co-Educator in the Treehouse classroom. Coming from Southeast Washington DC, Marlon has seen and been through a lot at his young age, and he admits that life can be difficult: “I have a temper. But being at Life Pieces has helped me realize how important using my discipline and meditating is. It’s not easy, but I am learning to use the Shield of Faith outside of Life Pieces.”
To Marlon, the most important part of Life Pieces is to buy in. “If you do that, it will have a positive impact,” he asserts. “You will learn things you won’t learn at school or at home. They show you things that raise your level of maturity.”
Marlon credits Life Pieces with helping him grow as a person. “I was shy and started to grow. Also, I’ve been at Saturday Academy for three years, and I really appreciate the higher levels of maturity and expectations they require from us.” Being fifteen now, and having been in the program since he was seven years old, Marlon takes pride in living up to those high expectations. He knows he can count on his Life Pieces family to be there. “When I first graduated into Legacy under Brother Chris, I was the youngest in the class. But they let me in because they recognized my level of maturity.” Marlon hesitates before adding, “My father and grandmother’s passing messes with me…but Life Pieces helps me.”
In the spring of 2017, Marlon graduated from the Legacy class and officially became a Junior Mentor, due to his considerable leadership in the Legacy classroom. He continues to work in the Legacy classroom as a positive example for the other gentlemen in Legacy.