Connecting local responses around the world
On Sunday, we had a soccer friendly amongst the youths and J.P Morgan. Since Boy A helped me to co-ordinate everything and was the I/C I sent him an SMS saying “You make an awesome youth leader, you guys did great today! Thanks for everything” His reply was “your welcome, I just want to make sure everything goes by plan. I won’t give up on those around me. I may get mad at times, but I would control”
If you have made mistakes, even serious ones, there is always another chance for you. What we call failure is not the falling down but the staying down. -Mary Pickford
On Monday, to my delight, I came across this:
“Guys, I need everyone's contact number. We need to do some team bonding. We'll have a meeting soon. I need to keep you all updated. Thanks. The tournament is in 1 month time. We need to train, have some meetings & chill together to get to know each other much better. Hope everyone turns up for every session. Thanks for understanding and do co-operate. - Your Sincere Team Captain”
He posted those words on a facebook group which they recently added me on.
This were the exact words of an 18 year old youth who has been with Beyond since he was in primary school. He’s been through a lot in life and those who knew him would have much to say. His life was a roller-coaster and his younger brother used to be ever so fearful of Boy A. Time passed by, things got better and I’m happy to say that Boy A is now an active member of the Henderson community. The fact that there is so much hope within himself for a better life ahead of him is enough for him to be an inspiration to his fellow comrades.
These were the comments from two other youth in response to Boy A’s post.
1) “Dude! great to hear, that u are taking initiative to bring all the Henderson youth's n get them to bond n understand each other! Proud of you Bro! Hail Boy A!
2) “Great to see you doing this. You such a good leader. Proud of you man”
Boy A’s reply:
“Hey. Thanks! Seriously appreciate the comments. I'm back on track guys”
When I read all of this last night, I couldn’t help but smile from ear to ear. It’s simply amazing how these youth, despite their personal struggles and challenges they face, take the time to affirm and encourage one another.
After smiling to my laptop screen for about 5 minutes, like a little mad kid, I sent an SMS to boy A to say “ you have no idea how proud I am of you! Glad to know you’re back on track! Stay focused and live your dreams! Always remember that we’re here for you.. I’ve got your back” =)
Boy A then replied to say “Hey! Thanks! Yeah, I’m back on track because I know that I’m not alone. I’m still living my dream. I will one day make everyone proud. Life has plenty of things to do. I’m not just doing for myself, but for everyone. I will share my dreams when I meet you k sis? “
Doesnt life just become so much more beautiful when people are able to accept one another’s differences and journey alongside through it all? Knowing that one is not ALONE makes a HUGE difference. These youth who have no idea about what “SALT” is are already practicing the principles of SALT in their daily lives.
Honestly, after knowing Boy A for a long time now and having known his past, it’s not easy to believe all he says as we know sometimes he adds salt n pepper in conversations. However, a colleague and I have told ourselves that everyone deserves a second chance and people do change. We have made it a point not to judge Boy A according to what he WAS, but to be there for him and to support him as he tries his best to become the person he wants to BECOME.
SALT is a way of life for me and for these youth. I wish for all of you to make it a part of yours too if it isnt already. I must admit, it is not the easiest to practice, but it’s worth the try! =)