Rebecca Sainsbury "...And [her] heart was moved, and the heart of [her] people, as the trees of the wood are moved with the wind." -2 Nephi 17:2

Growing up, I was told I had a talent for writing, but it wasn't until a journalist from the Salt Lake Tribune showed up to track practice one day that I truly experienced the excitement entailed with being involved in the news. At the time, I absolutely loved being featured in the news, and what teenager wouldn't? All the recognition and praise for my hard work was nothing short of very rewarding.

"Sainsbury and Foster [teammate], who will compete for Utah Valley University next season"

The best thing was living up to everything the news articles said, representing Utah Valley University as a student athlete, jumping new personal records, being featured as an Indoor Track WAC Champion; however, beneath all the glory an idea was growing within me.

What would it feel like to give others the same sense of importance I was feeling?

"You are called to serve in the Texas McAllen Mission"
Adventures in the Rio Grande Valley

January 27, 2016 marks the date I came home with an altered perspective on the country I call home. I had vicariously experienced the life of the uneducated, I had seen the struggles of just one of many voiceless sectors of America.

Despite the rich Texmex culture that claims McAllen and the surrounding cities, the southernmost portion of the United States is a trap for illegal immigrants. Those who have crossed over are unable to return back to their Mexican homeland, nor can they pass the checkpoint on to San Antonio. Immigrants remain confined to less than 2,000 square miles, impoverished and absent of the American Dream they once sought. The escape from the figurative chain impeding these people from financial and educational opportunities north of the border remain seemingly impossible.
I returned with an overwhelming desire to teach children and young adults to read and write fluently, granting their right to a voice in a country that is now theirs.

The ability to read and write are crucial prerequisites to become a life-long learner and develop an understanding of concepts which allow for informed personal opinion and voice. Not only would I teach, but I would seek and learn individual stories, documenting my findingsā€”goals and ambitions, family stories, and impacts on society. This idea has materialized from my dream to a tangible plan. I am driven to graduate Brigham Young University in April of 2019 with a BA in English Literature, immediately to continue forward with graduate studies in journalism. I have a passion for seeking out stories, interviewing people, and writing what I learn. My ambition to travel, teach, document, and radio broadcast my discoveries is my motivation, but giving a voice to the voiceless is my true goal.

Like the innumerable leaves on a tree, the vast stories waiting to be found in the world are too many to not move a heart, and too important not to share with the rest of humanity--that the hearts of the people might be moved.
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Rebecca Sainsbury

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