I just refound this website, and I'm totally inspired. (P.S. Does anyone else do that? Find a cool website, forget to bookmark it and then stumble upon it months later? Or is that just me?) It's so cool that someone my age decided to start doing something to help inner-city kids go to college. I feel passionate about that too, but I feel more passionate about getting them excited to learn and ready to succeed in school as early on as possible.
Also, I can't say the name of her project without wanting to sing the Newsboys' song Shine. Which is a totally cool feeling.
I think it's because I've taken myself out of my country and see our problems in a different light and because I've been blessed with the chance to get a college degree, and live in Europe, and get the chance to figure out what I want to do with my life with minimum nagging on the part of my parents; but now I want to pay it forward. I want to start something that can change the world.
Here's where you come in. Tell me about charities or non-profits that you love. Tell me a problem you see that you wish you could fix. Tell me what you think I can do in OKC to make a difference in the lives of kids. Or, just listen to my dream and help me figure out the steps to make it a reality. I want to start a traveling hands-on science program for kids in elementary school. I've seen that science can sometimes be relegated to a small place in our classrooms, and I feel that the best way to get kids excited about science, and math- because you need math to do cool science, is to give them the chance to do it themselves. It's cool to read a book about volcanoes, but reading a book, building a volcano, watching it "explode" from vinegar and baking soda and then comparing that to videos of real volcanoes is so much more exciting. Why just talk to the kids about the life cycles of plants and butterflies when you could have the living things in your classroom? I feel so strongly about this, and if I could create this job tomorrow, I totally would.
I know that a dream like that takes time, money, education, materials, volunteers and tons of other things. So while I'm refining and clarifying, what can I do when I get back from Spain? I plan on getting involved with my church's volunteer efforts again, and Tom and I are discussing working with the Lego Robotics programs in schools, and I want to volunteer with Habitat for Humanity, but what else is there? Preferably something where I can physically do something. I'm not very good with words, but I'm great with actions.
Also, I know there is a ton of need in the rest of the world. I've seen it here, and in Mexico, and Peru. I know people who travel to places I've never dreamed of to help those I'll never meet. And I support them as best I can, and I plan on traveling later on, but that's not where I feel called right now. So be nice and don't tell me things that aren't encouraging. But feel free to tell me about those people and groups too. I can always start praying for them :)