Since Sky was young she has shown much interest and has volunteered with various charitable organizations throughout the valley, two include the St. Mary’s food bank and, recently, the Phoenix Rescue Mission. She is protective of those she loves, and those found in unfortunate circumstance. Sky goes above and beyond for causes she believes in. She loves working with children. She is supportive and loving. When Sky sets her mind on something it becomes her passion.
Q. We heard you are a pretty good basketball player, how long have you been playing?
A. I have been playing basketball for 13 years, since I was four. I started playing basketball because my uncle was a really good athlete, so I wanted to try it out. I started out in the Biddy Ball league at the Boys and Girls’ Club and soon realized how much I enjoyed the sport. My mom set up private lessons with the athletic director at the Boys and Girls’ club and I started to train everyday of the week. After a couple of months playing for him, my mom decided to move me to the Scottsdale YMCA. There I started playing with girls and boys until they told the girls we were no longer allowed to. My mom and I decided that I should go back to the boys and girls club to continue playing. After a couple of years playing in their JV (middle school) and Varsity (high school) league, my coach and my mom decided I should pursue it further and join a club AAU team. The first team I tried out for, Arizona Elite, I made and basketball seemed to be going great from that point on. However, once you play as many games as I have, you realize it starts taking a toll on your body. Once I got into high school, I wasn’t sure how far I wanted to take basketball and wanted to focus on my academics. After a long discussion with my mom, my coaches, and the PCDS athletic director, I decided I would quit club and solely play for the PCDS Women’s Varsity Basketball team. I’ve had a great career and time playing with the PCDS Women’s Varsity team and do not regret my decision to quit club. It’s a much better environment playing for PCDS than it is playing for some club teams.
Q. You also are an assistant coach?
A. Yes, I started assistant coaching my sophomore year. I first started assistant coaching for the middle school teams at PCDS, then my junior year, I was asked by a family friend, a high school varsity basketball coach, if I could help coach and train his guards. I immediately jumped at the opportunity. Once their season and my junior year season were done, I became a personal trainer for some of the lower and middle school girls at PCDS.
Q. Tell us more about your love of volunteering.
A. I love working with kids, so this summer I went to Ghana to participate in a Discipleship Training School program at City of Refuge Ministries. This program was solely meant to help me spiritually, but I wanted to help the kids. Every chance I got, I was at their Faith Roots Academy either helping with classes or playing with kids during their recess. I became especially close to several of the boys, Sammy, Gbedo, Alex, and Malvin. They stole my heart, and I can’t wait to go back there this summer. With the volunteering I do here, I help my mom volunteer at the Phoenix Rescue Mission then I volunteer at youth camps as a basketball coach. Most of the opportunities I get to volunteer are spent dedicating myself to improving young lives across Arizona and hopefully the globe.
Q. What are some other things you like to do for fun?
A. I love to take photos and create various art pieces from the photos I take. Every chance I get I take photos of my family, friends, nature, and food. Food is probably one of my most favorite things to picture because food can really tell a story. I have had some of my best memories from dining out with friends and the photos of the food I have take me back to those great times. However, my favorite types of photos are ones that are natural. I captured a lot of great pictures of the kids during my time at City of Refuge Ministries. The most recent project that I have begun working on is a photo poster of all the children from City of Refuge Ministries.
Q. What do you want to be when you grow up?
A. After my experience in Ghana, I have realized that I want help rescue and better children’s lives across the globe. My life mantra is “be the voice for the voiceless,” and I believe that most of the time that ends up being the children of the world. I want to become the voice, the advocate for children across the globe whether it be in the courtroom prosecuting those who choose to abuse the innocence of children or it be physically rescuing kids from modern day slavery and child trafficking.
Sky is a senior at Phoenix Country Day School.