We were asked at our weekly leader meeting: what can we do to put a dent in poverty and hunger?
At first the question was heavy and without a lot of hope. Then I thought about the very core of what we are doing at the Boys & Girls Club, our mission: To enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to realize their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens.
After much thought, that very mission is, in reality, the answer to the question. Our local organization sees over 1000 kids a day. When we achieve our mission, those kids, some of which are living in poverty and are hungry, will grow up and break the unfortunate cycle they were born into.
I cannot think of one person who reached their potential, who is productive, who is caring and who is a responsible citizen, that is in poverty and hungry. Oh it is possible, just not probable.Those thousand kids will grow up. Lets assume we meet our mission. These kids will marry and likely have kids of their own. Now our 1000 kids and the values we instill have impacted another 3000 people (their suppose and at least 2 children), not to mention any friends they might have mentored along the way. So we, by simply following our mission will put 4000 plus people our of poverty and hunger.
In the grand scheme of things, 4000 isn't a lot. But according to the Boys & Girls Club of American: “In 2012, Boys & Girls Club youth development programs, training and services impacted nearly 4 million children and teens.” So what if these 4 million kids grow up and get married and have 2 kids of their own: thats 7 million people that may have been on the path to poverty but are now productive, caring, responsible citizens. 7 million is a dent!
I read somewhere that if you feel your job matters to someone, you will find satisfaction in it. Couple that with a good team, measurable goals and a strong since of community and now you know why I love my job.