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In This Together: All contributions make a big difference
by LOUISE R. SHAW
Mar 14, 2014 | 1740 views | 0 0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print

The storyteller wants to make the world a better place by helping kids know their lives are full of interesting stories they should write down and share. And he wants to help them realize that their relatives have lives full of stories, too, if they’ll listen.

The mother wants to make the world a better place by helping kids realize the harm in pornography and develop a lifelong commitment to avoid it.

The scout wants to make the world a better place by providing food for children who might spend the weekend hungry.

The biologist sees her chance to make a difference in teaching fourth graders about the animals around us that need both protection and space.

The history teacher has set his mark on bettering the world by involving kids in a competition that requires studying hard and thinking fast.

Everywhere I go, everything I cover, I find passionate people working to make the world a better place.

The motivation usually isn’t money. It’s not often fame.

It’s just simply seeing a need and wanting to meet it.

But more than wanting, they’re working to make it happen.

The architect wants to inspire kids to love learning in the space she is designing for their school.

The city councilman wants to provide a needed service to the people in his city but is careful to listen to the varied concerns of every individual.

The school board president wants to find every way possible to improve and fund the education of students in her district.

The world, for some of these people, is big. Maybe it’s the state, maybe it’s a city, maybe it’s a neighborhood. But many are working in smaller, but no less vital, spheres. Maybe it’s just a school, just a class, or just a child.

Maybe there’s no such thing as too small when you’re working to make things better.

I love people who are passionate and I love finding out why they do what they do.

When the traveling storytellers told me about how they want American students to know about the traditions and fables of Asian students so their minds would be opened and bridges would be built, I wanted that too.

When the second-grade teacher told me how important it is that her students learn not only to read but to love reading, I knew she was right and I was glad she was doing what she could to make it happen.

When the moms organizing the spelling bee let it be known that they believe in the importance of that skill, you just can’t help but be grateful for how they are motivating so many kids to study and learn.

There is the mom who teaches an art class at her children’s school.

There is the state legislator working to ensure her constituents are breathing cleaner air.

There are the performers that bring a message of love and family and integrity to their audiences with their nightly songs and dances.

There are the students taking anti-bullying assemblies to school after school.

A congressman teaches junior high students the dangers of alcohol.

An insurance company official visits high schools to convince students of the dangers of texting.

A banker talks to classes about avoiding debt and building savings.

A former clothing designer shares her enthusiasm for history, telling of women’s suffrage and the need for a continued focus on women’s rights.

An Olympian visits a high school to talk to kids about working hard and reaching dreams.

There are so many people in so many ways trying to make the world a better place.

And here is my message to them: It’s working.

You are doing it. In little ways, in big ways.

The world is a better place because of you.

Thank you.

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