I tend to be a glass half-full kind of person, preferring to look to the positive and believing that the future holds better things. But it certainly has been kind of tough lately when considering all that is happening in our world, our country, and our state. Earthquakes, tsunamis, and nuclear reactor meltdowns in Japan; a different earthquake in New Zealand; political unrest all across Northern Africa; Congress in Washington, DC and the Indiana General Assembly in deadlock; the list, unfortunately, could go on and on.
When faced with the seemingly never-ending waves of bad news brought to us in 24 hour immedicacy by all the information gathering crews of international, national, state, and local media outlets, I choose not to be bowed down but to stand up straight and look for the many signs of hope that are just as much present as the bad news—if we only look for them. The halls of the United Way Building have been filled for the past couple of afternoons by teams of young people coming to present their ideas for Youth As Resources projects. They believe they can make our community a better place through civic action and community service. I heard about a young person who has overcome a dysfunctional home life, homelessness, and poverty and who will be graduating from college with honors this spring. Another colleague in the youth development field told me the story of a young man who first came to their facility as a juvenile probationer who has stayed involved with the agency after his probation period was over and is now exploring college options.
These signs of hope convince me that we can and will prevail, even when it seems like we have every reason to throw up our hands in despair and walk away. These beacons of hope help to revive my spirit and renew my efforts. Thank you , all you young people, for keeping us going and being our inspiration.