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EcoKids Report #10

Starting Raps & Songs/Community Activists January 9, 1999

We had two weeks off for the holidays so it has been some time since our last report. That doesn't mean nothing has been happening. Much has been happening and it took some time to put it into perspective.

Most of our reports tell of the times when things seem wonderful, like the optimism of spring. Well, we have our winter bleak and dormant times too. If this is going to be a model that others might get some ideas from some of the down side needs to be explored as well as the good times. (See Discussion)LINK 

On January 9, as promised we had three dynamic, self-starting community activists people come to share how and why they do what they do. They were incredibly inspiring. The problem that only six of the fourteen kids showed up to talk with them. Although I realized that they are just kids, and their families have needs too, and there are many perfectly good reasons why each didn't come, I was very disappointed. Teachers commonly report difficulty getting started again after vacation. So I know it is expected. How can a program grow if the participants don't come? 

Sharon Cheers, Sondra Goodman and Gwen Strickland did a great job of sharing. Sharon spoke of how caring for the environment is such a natural part of the way she comes to life. She made it sound so easy. Sondra said that she grew up believing that she could do anything that she wanted, and she said, "You know I still believe that." When Gwen was asked, "When you get down, how do you get back up"? She replied, "I limit my 'pity parties' to only five minutes. Then they've just got to go." The quotes are brief but the inspiration was powerful. We also played some music and sang some songs that we might use in the Earth Day performances.

I think building sustainable neighborhood community is about holding a core vision, reworking that vision constantly to keep it living and developing the discipline to hold it through storms of indifference. The vision must also be inclusive enough to allow other's visions to sprout and take root. Comments are always welcome. 

Thanks to volunteers Ellie Dawson, Joel Kraft and Roberta Vogel. 

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