Youth Stories

Inspiring service in the next generation of leaders.

Travis Manion Foundation Veteran Mentors aren’t just focused on making the world a better place today. Watch how they’re dedicated to mentoring the next generation to make an impact in the future.

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Youth Stories

Sam Schneider

As a high school junior, Sam serves as a Lieutenant in the Cadet Post at her school. Both her father and mother are U.S. Army veterans, and she shares their commitment, dedication and passion for service. Under the guidance of Veteran Mentor Ben Alexander of Arizona, Sam has furthered her skills as a leader and motivated others in her community to follow in her footsteps.

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Youth Stories

8 Million Stories

Houston Veteran Mentors held a Character Leadership Course in August through December of 2019 at 8 Million Stories, a local nonprofit that guides disconnected and vulnerable youth. TMF Veteran Mentors engaged with youth, ages 14-18, through character development lessons and activities designed to foster stronger relationships and develop purpose through serving others. 

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Youth Stories

Sarai Garcia

When Sarai Garcia was 13, her mother’s breast cancer diagnosis changed the trajectory of her childhood. While friends and classmates participated in sports and after-school activities, Sarai spent her time connecting with her mother. Once she became involved in the Character Does Matter program at the USS Midway in San Diego, she slowly began to open up to others, expressing her ideas and eventually shining as a leader among her peers. The 2021 Character Does Matter Scholarship winner, Sarai plans to pursue a career as a social worker.

Youth Stories

Caitlin Egan

Caitlin Egan first connected with TMF during her senior year of high school when she joined the TMF Club at Conwell-Egan High School in Pennsylvania. As part of her service with the Club, Caitlin led a project in which students built a memorial garden at the school in honor of fallen hero Capt. Scott E. Craven, USAF, a fellow graduate of Conwell-Egan. “My involvement with TMF has been amazing,” says Caitlyn, an “If Not Me, Then Who…” Scholarship Recipient. “I learned so much about how to be a better person, and how to make my community and the people around me better.”

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Youth Stories

St. Louis Step Team

Marine Veteran Chris Randall first connected with TMF as a Mentor in the Character Does Matter program for youth. Later on, as his relationship with TMF grew through his participation with the Spartan Leadership Program, he continued to foster a deeper connection with his own community. Chris recognized a need and an opportunity, specifically among Black youth in his hometown of St. Louis. Ultimately he decided to combine his love of step and Character Does Matter by delivering curriculum to his step team on a regular basis, providing much needed mentorship and guidance.

Youth Stories

Jordan Tovin

After being introduced to Character Does Matter at his school, 13-year-old Jordan Tovin of Atlanta, GA, was inspired. Searching for a way to incorporate the “If Not Me Then Who…” ethos into his everyday life, he took action by organizing an Operation Legacy service project in his community. Through his year-long capstone program, Jordan earned the participation of his whole class to join in the beautification and maintenance of trails in Sandy Springs Park, making the trails more enjoyable and beneficial to the entire community for years to come.

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TMF Stats:
001 78,000+ Veterans + Survivors Empowered
002 200,000+ Spartan Members
003 550,000+ Youth Living "If Not Me, Then Who..." Movement