Avon Scherff thinks young girls can do just about anything if they dream it and believe it, so she made that the slogan of her new foundation, I Am I Can.
I want to be an advocate for girls entering high school, from grade nine until they graduate; encourage them to have goals beyond high school, whether that's military, educational based, starting their own business, cosmetology school, just something beyond high school, said Scherff. "Just really be there to listen, guide and mentor through their high school years."
Scherff, who owns Scherff Insurance Agency, Inc., said she took the plunge to form a foundation through a combination of her son's experiences and her own upbringing.
"Two of my sons' friends lost both their mothers this year. There are girls from split families, those who have personal tragedy or financial hardship. I hear stories of dropping out before they graduate and working minimum wage jobs, unstable family situations, things we expereicne as adults that these kids are going through at young ages. We can be their voice," said Scherff. "Three students in his high school committed suicide within the first six months. To get a child in that grade to commit suicide is just unbelievable. Who knows if they had the resources or someone to talk to."
I Am I Can will be an outlet for girls to air out their troubles where they feel safe. Scherff said by the fall, she hopes to have about 10 girls and five volunteers who will be mentors or advocates. The foundation, which she is working to secure a non-profit title for, will be a source for college guidance, funds for applications or possibly college visits, and a place for special connections to be made.
Scherff digs deep to draw from her own personal experiences growing up to find a common ground where she can relate to those she seeks to help.