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When my son was little (a long time ago considering his 6-foot-frame now towers over me!), I loved eavesdropping on him and his buddies. Their unique perspectives often caught me off-guard — sort of a mix of sweet innocence and incredible insight.
I see that same combination in the answers CI kids gave when our field reporters asked them what superpower they’d like to have. I especially liked the response of young Evis (pictured below). Her answer was creative, crafty and hilarious! (Check it out here. The other kids’ answers were similarly witty — and compassionate!)
Our kids’ superpower wishes give a peek into their perspectives on life. But to truly “get” their viewpoints, you have to consider their experiences. After all, it’s not just their physical environments — which can be incredibly tough — that impact their outlooks; it’s circumstances that discourage their mental, physical and emotional development — and even infringe on their basic rights.
That’s why I can’t help but get the warm fuzzies when I talk about working for CI.
Our mission is to give kids a place, a team and a path out of poverty — safe, clean community centers; skilled, caring mentors; and smart, impactful programs that prepare our kids for successful futures.
It’s pretty awesome to be part of the movement to end poverty.
So, spoiler alert! I’m pretty biased about this issue of Journeys. Its stories really show how CI is changing our kids’ views of themselves and their lives. For example, check out the photos by teens in our Youth Reporters program. Ah-may-zing! And, after all, how much more literal can you get in truly seeing our kids’ perspectives on their worlds?! Plus, I love how their talent exemplifies the success of our approach.
But the great stories don’t end there. Another fabulous example of CI’s successful approach is Melvin, a grad who saw his limited opportunities in Honduras and grabbed tight onto CI’s job-training program. He became a barista, helped expand the coffee franchise and now sends money home each month. He’s not only lifting himself out of poverty, but he’s benefitting his entire family — not to mention setting an incredible example for his siblings and other kids in the tiny village where he grew up.
Melvin is the perfect representation of what we strive for and want all of our kids to achieve!
And while his perspective could easily have been shaped in the worst ways by his environment and circumstance, he instead has a positive, uplifting view of the world — filled with hope and gratitude!
Take some pride in that attitude. You helped him craft that perspective with your caring support.
On behalf of Melvin and all our kids, thank you!