The sum of an unassuming hero

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Luke Pires, Editor

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When you hear the word ‘hero’, what do you think of? Odds are you may be thinking of someone such as a firefighter or a doctor or the like. But not all heroes wear capes. An unassuming hero is somebody who is considered a hero, but it also very low-key about it. One example is Sue Pires. She works at a company called Silicon Valley Children’s Fund & TeenForce that helps foster youth between the ages of 14-24 gain employment skills, provide internships and part-time jobs. They are located in downtown San Jose.

TeenForce has been around for about 7 years , but in the summer of 2017  they merged with Silicon Valley Children’s Fund which has been around for about 25-30 years. They do this because they realize that most foster kids are required to leave their foster homes at a certain age and usually do not have any idea of what to do from there. This company works hands-on with youth to inform them of the requirements of things like how to act in the workplace, during job interviews, etc.

Sue has been working at TeenForce for a little under two years and is a Youth Employment Coach, which means she coaches high school-aged foster youth and helps them get and keep a job. When asked if she considered herself a hero she replied with “No, I do not. Actually, I think the kids are more of the heroes in my eyes. I feel privileged to get to support them along their journey to self-sufficiency.”

Sue has already helped over 100 teens in her job and will continue to help hundreds more. What Sue loves most about her job is the opportunity to be somebody who the kids can trust, a figure that most of the kids don’t have. (In addition, she noticed kids are crazy about the cool arcade room Childen’s Force/Teenforce have downstairs!).

Sue has not had a job for a while not have a job for a while. While she has been unemployed and raising her kids for some time, she was able to quickly fit right in with this job. She originally started this as a summer internship and applied for an actual job after realizing that she was actually pretty good at it. The building where she works is pretty swanky. They have an outside lounge area, a gym, an arcade and a snack room with a cafe and vending machines.

A hero doesn’t have to be someone who defuses bombs or rescues people in distress. All a hero has to be is someone who does good for others for no other reason but the satisfaction of knowing you improved someone’s life in an aspect. Sue Pires helps those who cannot help themselves for a living, and that is what I would call a hero.

 

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