Wednesday, November 25, 2009

My Year of Hopefulness - It Takes A Village, or an Army

I've been having a great time in Florida with my niece, Lorelei. I can hardly believe that she'll be 2 in January. I wrote about her on this blog the day that she was born and she has appeared a number of other times in my posts. It's fun to watch her learn and change. My sister and brother-in-law are tired pretty much all the time - Lorelei is always on the go and always curious. She's also somehow inherited insomnia from my mom and I.

While many people say that it takes a village to raise a child, I'd add that it requires a very large village, or in many cases an army. It's amazing how many things Lorelei gets into. Everything from electric outlets to cabinet doors to chairs that are a tiny bit too tall for her. She needs feeding and changing and washing and activities that teach her reading, her colors, her numbers, etc. And the list goes on. She needs an eye on her constantly.

Lorelei is lucky - she has so many people in her life who watch out for her, who love her, and take care of her. Every day, I think about how lucky she is, and how many kids are not so lucky. I think about how many kids don't have a village much less an army. Some don't have anyone at all. This is where we can all come in.

This Fall, I had the opportunity to volunteer teach at one of the best high schools in New York. When I told a friend of mine about the choice I had to make to do that assignment or work on my own program in East Harlem, she said, "Christa, those kids in that high school are fine. They don't need you. They have plenty of advantages. Whether or not you're there won't matter to them. It will matter to those kids in East Harlem. Go where you're needed."

Every day, we have a chance to be a part of a child's village, and it's most important for us to begin building a village for kids who don't have one at all. This might be the greatest challenge of our time. We can be that village, that army, with a small donation of time or money or concern. If we have any interest at all in the future of our planet, in the future of our own children, we have to stand up for other kids who need us.


runner52 said...

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family

Christa said...

Thanks so much, runner52! You, too!