“The Power to Give. The Power to Make a Difference. Power to Be”
My quest towards changing the face of mental and physical health and those who are authentically gifted continues with my next RUN 4 A CAUSE marathon coming up on October 9th as I compete for social compassion and social justice with the Victoria Full Marathon, supporting Power to Be Adventure Therapy Society. My call to action begins – The POWER to PLEDGE!
July 31st and the San Francisco Marathon spawned a 3 month passion project to better understand the dis-connects and prejudices that still remain in our society toward those who we classify as “different” or “disabled or “disadvantaged.”
Power to Be Adventure Therapy Society and the Canadian Mental Health Association are two organizations striving to change the face of mental health through positive action, advocacy, support, education and resolution of the very fabric the drives our humanity – with compassion. Power to Be provides dynamic outdoor recreation and educational programs that enrich the health and quality of life youth, adults and families facing significant life challenges.
The Adaptive Recreation Programs that Power to Be provides are a positive response to the community’s need for inclusive, nature-based recreation activities for people living with a barrier or disability.
How do we move from a place of exclusion, to inclusion?
We are all fundamentally the same, no matter what our age, race, gender, culture, religion, limitations or strengths may be. We are all authentic and we all unique. Until we realize that we all belong to a common humanity, that we are interconnected and need each other to evolve, we will continue to hide behind feelings of elitism and superiority and behind the walls of prejudice, judgment and distain that those feeling ultimately engender.
What is the origin of this fear that so hinders us in the making of our hearts desire: a better world? Isn’t that we all want…a better world?
The excluded, I believe, live certain values and morals that we all still need to discover to live within ourselves and it is fear that holds us back from experiencing life on a myriad of levels, and thus from including others. Fear of failure, of not being able to cope with a situation, of not being able to relate to another person, is at the very heart of exclusion and this fear of “different” because we ourselves, would then need to change, to learn to communicate or to relate outside the confines of what we have been taught.
The key, is embracing that fear and to see it as an opportunity to reveal to each of us the basic beauty of humanity, which can empower us to grow.
When I talk about the word inclusion, whether I talk about those with mental or physical disabilities, those who are homeless, those struggling with addiction, those living in poverty, or people suffering with AIDS worldwide – I am speaking of those who are marginalized and the need to re affirm that they all (and we all) have a gifts to give, to our community, to our society and to us individually.
My hope is that through the power of RUN 4 A CAUSE and my two marathons, and over the course of these 3 months (Aug – Oct) I can learn more about how we can start to encourage our educational systems, our government and policy makers and encourage each of you reading this blog post to join the discussion. To start answering the question of how each of us can impact this movement, bring to light the authentic and compassionate impact we could have as a more inclusive society, so that our youth, our next leaders of tomorrow, can instigate the mandate of that better tomorrow. That very mandate we have worked so hard to grow and nurture.
After the Victoria Marathon, in late October I will be holding two salons/networking events (Vancouver ad Victoria) geared towards opening this discussion of how WE can move towards a society of inclusion, how can WE increase the momentum of change. Members of both the Canadian Mental Health Association (Vancouver, North & West Vancouver Branches) and Power to Be Adventure Therapy Society will be in attendance. For those of you who are educators, parents, policy makers, social justice crusaders for our youth and anyone interested in participating please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
You have the Power to Give…
….a kid living with cancer the chance to be a kid again
….a troubled teen an opportunity to grow in nature
….a person the opportunity to get out of their wheelchair and into a sea kayak.
Please pledge, your support will give a unique kid or youth the opportunity to live an inclusive life and strive for greatness.
To Pledge RUN 4 A CAUSE Power To Be follow link here and choose your option: http://www.powertobe.ca/?pid=donate_
For more information on Power to Be: http://www.powertobe.ca/
For more information on CMHA: http://www.cmha.ca/bins/index.asp