Our September Limelight feature focuses on one of our newest board members, Lorena Bravo. We sat down with Lorena to find out more about her and why she chose to volunteer with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Lehigh Valley.
Lorena is also a Big Sister and is a self-employed business owner and entrepreneur in the Lehigh Valley.
Position: Big Sister and Board member at BBBSLV
What drew you to work with BBBSLV?
Littles… I grew up poor but incredibly fortunate to have had wonderful adults in my life including my parents, teachers, and mentors. I was drawn to the program because I believe I can be that too for BBBSLV Littles. I find that my unique experiences growing up as an immigrant in the US, achieving goals, and ultimately getting to quite literally live the American Dream, allow me to not only relate to the community BBBSLV serves, but also be an example as to what can be achieved in this great country I now get to call home
What keeps you motivated throughout the day?
My family and my community. As a business owner who has employed only women to work for my company as well as service almost 100% women who are customers, I have found that being positive and uplifting for others (especially during difficult times) can make a huge difference, not only on individuals but on our community as a whole.
Who is one mentor who made an impact on your life and how?
There are SO many. It’s hard to pick one, however, one person who comes to mind is my client and friend Lesley Fallon; this is a woman who has been genuinely interested in giving me great advice, and she’s done this willingly and without reservation or my asking. Lesley is someone I look up to and whom I strive to be like. I’m not sure she even knows I consider her a mentor, or whether she has any idea to what extent I heed her advice and look forward to our conversations… she’s been an incredible force in my life and I will always be grateful that she chose to be a patron at my business. I adore her.
Do you volunteer anywhere else, or, are you involved with other community organizations?
I’m a member of the Kress Society with the Allentown Art Museum, I consider the arts a vital and essential part of growing up wholesome and happy. Through them, I get to support the Arts and Allentown City. I’m also currently a Graduate student and Community Fellow at Lehigh University, over the next 12 months, I will be working with a community partner/non-profit organization to achieve community-centered goals while working on getting a Master’s degree in Political Science.
Describe working with BBBSLV in one word.