This post is long overdue. I’ve been anticipating writing this one for the longest. However, life got in the way. Of course that still will not downplay my excitement when I think about the day that I received what I call the most prestigious honor, thus far in my life. I say thus far, because I anticipate even greater, later!
Let me give you some background on the community work that I do on a daily basis, before I bestow upon you why I am still excited. I work with and mentor youth in my community, as well as youth at my church. The youth that I mentor in the community are from what people would consider downtrodden, gang infested neighborhoods in Chicago; as well as youth that live in areas with very few resources, to inspire hope in them to succeed. I am also the Baptist Youth Fellowship Director at my Church. It is a group between the ages of 12 – 18. We do everything together; study the bible, go on fun outings, teach and show leadership, provide character building and create opportunities to show teamwork. To let all the youth know that together we can.
As I have always stated, I love kids and I feel they need hope, encouragement, genuine love and support to make it in this world; along with a firm foundation in which to build from. I constantly try to lead by example, in letting them know that without consistent effort, the work doesn’t mean as much. However, when you see the work you’ve put into something, the rewards and joy is greater.
Imagine my surprise when I received the Presidential Volunteer Service Award for my community efforts. I mean, an award from the White House!! Can I tell you, the joy!! I am beyond grateful and humbled!!! However, the work is nowhere near done. There is even more work to do. As I said, I’m from Chicago and until every child is reached, helped and hopeful and capable of launching their lives from a stable and firm foundation. My work is yet to be done. “When you have failed the youth, you have failed the world!” ~LaKisha Renee Brown