In our blog today we asked our fall intern, Lizzy O’Hara, to write about the impact that she’s seen Nine13sports have in the community and what some of her takeaways have been during her first few months interning with us.

Over the past couple of months, I have had the pleasure to intern with Nine13sports. While I have only been here a short time, I have already been exposed to multiple aspects of the organization, allowing me to develop skills in various areas of the nonprofit world.

The majority of my time here has been spent on the front-line operations, running the Kids Riding Bikes program alongside other staff members. This program allows us to go into schools all over Central Indiana during physical education classes to get kids excited about riding bikes. For many of the kids we work with, it will be the first time that they have ever been on a bike. While there are some moments of frustration from first-time or less experienced riders, the overwhelming emotion after finishing up is excitement and a sense of accomplishment. It is truly wonderful to be a part of this experience for numerous kids within my community.

Not only is it great to see the direct impact that Nine13sports has on the kids’ lives, but also to witness how appreciative members of the community are to see these programs in their schools. From teachers to administration, to board members, to local businesses, and even to local mayors. This organization participates in a multitude of community events and it is apparent to see the positive impression that is being made all over central Indiana.

This position has also allowed me to learn about the back-end operations of a young, but steady growing nonprofit. This week we are rolling out a new program for the first time in 7 years. The staff has all come together to do tasks that are most certainly not listed in their job descriptions (such as building benches in the mobile trailer) because they all want the program to succeed. It is encouraging to see staff members of all levels constantly working together as equals at Nine13sports.

Nine13sports has also allowed me to participate in board member visits, social media outreach, and the recruitment process for hiring new interns. This is absolutely an organization that is willing to create tailored internship experiences for each and every intern that walks through their doors. I am thankful for what I have been able to learn so far and am looking forward to seeing what the next couple months have in store for me at Nine13sports!