Photo by Tessa Marie Images
Girls Program Coordinator for Garage Community and Youth Center.
“I always knew that I wanted to help others become more confident in themselves,” says Maria Ines Guerrero.
Born in Mexico, Guerrero came to the United States at age 12. As a high school student, she worked with the Chester County Intermediate Unit, where she helped younger children in the Kennett School District. Many of them were learning English as a second language, something Guerrero could relate to.
After graduation, Guerrero took a role at the Garage, a youth center in Kennett Square for students in grades 6-12. Now its girls’ program coordinator, she oversees both the Kennett and West Grove locations. Many of the 500 students stay with the program from middle through high school. “We try to provide activities and resources for them to become a better version of themselves,” she says.
Activities range from homework help and personal development to career and life skills. “I’ve always told them that life is hard, and you have to learn to be OK with yourself so you can grow and know where you want to be,” Guerrero says.