The value of investing into young people.
When I tell people about what I do, youth work & leadership development, their first response is usually quite positive. Then as the conversation continues and it is discovered that I'm a full-time volunteer doing this work the response begins to change dramatically. This is the point where I feel like it becomes more of an interrogation rather than a conversation: "You mean you don't get paid?"
"How long have you been doing this?" "When are you going to get a real job?"
My list goes on of questions I get asked, I actually don't mind the questions.
In fact, I kind of like the questions because through those conversations I get to explain the "why" behind what I do.
I believe young people can and are shaping the world around us.
When I was a teenager I had dreams, passions, and desires that were burning inside of me, things that I never thought possible. I'm so thankful for the different influences I had in my life, whether that be my parents, teachers, friends, or other mentors. They believed in me, they gave input into my life to help me accomplish the things I wanted to do, and they still encourage and support me.
I am investing my time, effort, and life to see change in this world. I'd like to see change in many of the heartbreaking issues we face today: suicide & depression, bullying & self-harm, child exploitation & abuse, poverty & lack of education.
By training & equipping leaders to reach a generation change is possible.