Juliana Saling, also known as Juice, is a Master Trainer at TGP and was a part of the second cohort of Master Trainer Interns during the summer of 2019. She is a Sophomore from Maplewood, New Jersey, and is majoring in Business Administration at American University with a specialization in Ethical Business Management and Consulting. Her goal is to provide consulting services to major companies in the business sector to utilize their platform to expand the magnitude of their influence, specifically through community service and outreach programs, as well as adjusting their business plans and models to achieve a higher standard of ethics; and ultimately improving their public standing and increase revenue. She is also a member of the American University Women’s soccer team, and before college; was on the NYCFC girl’s academy team. Here’s Juice’s story:
“Soccer has always been an immense part of my life as well as my identity; and has been not only an outlet for me but also a vehicle to achieving success in all aspects of my life. My journey with soccer has been long and not always easy; as I have struggled with all sorts of adversity from coaches, to injuries, and by far, the biggest struggle being my confidence. But that changed when I joined Grassroots.
I first joined Grassroots, in the winter of my Freshman year; after hearing my teammate Dylan talk about in ways that made it almost impossible to not want to be a part of. In all honesty, at first, I was terrified of the idea of letting my guard down and being goofy, loud, and vulnerable. I was even more terrified at the thought of having twenty sets of eyes watching me as I talk to them about HIV/AIDS and intently listening to everything I say. But from my very first day at Grassroots training, I felt my walls slowly being knocked down by an overwhelming amount of love, positivity, energy, and the unignorable sense of belonging.
Within the past year both as an intern, a Master trainer, and simply a member of the family, Grassroots is not simply a part of my schedule, but a part of who I am. Because of Grassroots, I have learned to conquer my fear of speaking in front of people, and am comfortable now feeling twenty, thirty, or even a hundred sets of eyes watching me. I have always struggled with confidence and anxiety and Grassroots helped me gain the confidence to be fearless in everything I do and welcome the possibility of failure, while aiming for success.
Grassroots is important for so many reasons, relating to health education, sport, and community, and more, and so there aren’t enough words to explain this. But in short; Grassroots is important because it creates unique communities of individuals and builds them up both in knowledge, values, and love so that the world becomes a little less scary, and so that they know that they will always have a family at TGP.” #MyTGPstory