CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Make a Difference Day is a nationwide day of service and volunteerism and this year, WCNC/NBC Charlotte is teaming up with Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont for a donation drive to help fund their youth and career training programs.

The Career Leadership Academy for Youth Program, also known as the CLAY program is changing the lives of students in our community each and every day.

Anitra Griffin is currently a student at the University of North Carolina-Asheville. She told WCNC anchor Colleen Odegaard that she would not be where she is today without Goodwill. While attending a Charlotte high school, Anitra was homeless, sick often and trying to keep up with a rigorous course load.

“During the CLAY program, I went through a lot of obstacles. Apparently, I started off like a shy wilting willow, but now I'm a beautiful butterfly, it seems. I'm more confident, I talk louder, I’m more active with people. I no longer sit there and cover my face or hide or not want to answer questions or speak to people. Now, I'm more me more confident and I believe in myself,” said Anitra.

She said they CLAY program brought out her personality through various training and involvement requirements.

"First off it was public speaking and no longer being able to sit by myself. You had to participate, there was no way to hide,” she explained.

Anitra said the CLAY program has made her who she is today and she can’t imagine her life without it. You can help fund the program by joining in on our donation drive Saturday, October 28. We will be accepting donations at the Park Road Shopping Center in Charlotte from 6 a.m. until 2 p.m.