Folks who know me are not surprised when my mind jumps from thought to thought. It’s not easy to carry on a conversation, but they are use to it. In fact, the reason I write is because it helps to sort out my monkey brain, as it swings from idea to idea.
I chalk part of this up to being an Aries and have been dealing with it all my life. In high school, I tried out for each sport. In most cases, I never went to see if I made it. I just wanted to “try” In my twenties, I moved from country to country. Again, because I wanted to try.
So finding myself at Calgary Youth Justice’s AGM last night, I was challenged by a sheet of paper listing over 300 volunteers, some of whom have given 13 years of volunteer service to the organization.
In this industry, we talk about patience. Change and impact take a long time. One small act at a time. As I sat with members of the Youth Justice Committees, I was in awe of their immediate knowledge of the services in Calgary. When asked, “How would you support a teen with addiction?” – a list of organizations and supports was rattled off, from memory, by three ladies at my table.
I sat bewildered. My mind swirled, “How do you know all of that?! And so quickly?”
The most apparent answer – longevity.
When you spend the time, over time – you learn. And when you have 300 committed people doing that same thing, you’ve created a community. What I love most about Calgary Youth Justice is that they’ve created a community (over 10+) years dedicated to giving Calgary’s at-risk youth another chance.
It is a community solution – to what many would consider the role of the Police, the legal system, the government.
Certainly, longevity is why we find community within Social Venture Partners. Because people who have spent the past ten years with together, or portions there of, know that the strength of change in their city – is through community. We are a community of Investors supporting a community of Youth Justice Committees.
In each situation, the strength of community is because people are in it for the long haul. They are patiently optimistic. And with one small act at a time, they will make change. They are making change.
And while this monkey brain is challenged to focus for 13 minutes, it is happy that it can at least call attention to those who serve, have served, are serving for 13 years.