Welcome to IMPACT: Boston 2014!
Posted on 06/22/2014 @ 08:00 PM
We were beyond excited to welcome the participants to IMPACT: Boston today!
Each teen came excited to spend the next two weeks at Brandeis University and were anxious to begin making a difference in the Boston community.
After settling in and getting to know each other, participants heard from the Teen Coordinators to kick off the opening program, in which they were asked to describe why they do community service. After writing their initial reason, teens began thinking about this question more in depth. Teens will continue to develop their answers to this question throughout the program.
The room surged with energy as participants were given envelopes containing the service sites they would be attending throughout the program. Teens discovered the details of their service work as well as the other participants that would be joining them.
The IMPACT: Boston Director explained the importance of the program, giving additional meaning to the two weeks at Brandeis with the hopes that teens return to their home communities ready to continue the work started in Boston. Though the work we will complete over the next two weeks remains important and valuable, its crucial to remember the impact we can make when we return home.
We learned that participating in IMPACT is making an investment towards furthering activism and service among the participants in the future. One thought that truly stuck with me is the perspective we can gain from the people we are helping and working with at our sites. If teens leave the program ready to form relationships and make connections to people in their communities, then the program will have been successful. Something as simple as learning the name of your school janitor and starting a conversation can begin to change how we view out communities. The program is far more than just direct service; it gives us the opportunity to leave with a different perspective of the communities around us, of our home chapters and regions, and our role in bettering the world.
After such an engaging discussion on the importance of service, participants set a kavanah (intention) for the rest of the program. Everyone is eager to experience Day One at their service sites tomorrow!
After a meaningful first day, we can’t wait to see where this program goes in the next 11 days!
By Shea Northfield (Evergreen Region) and Cameron Smith (North Texas Oklahoma Region)
IMPACT: Boston 2014 Teen Coordinators