Changing New Orleans One Child at a Time, Part I

Four years ago this week, Hurricane Katrina changed the landscape of the entire city of New Orleans. It left a path of devastation in its wake that even now, years later, is still visible.
 
As we remember this week all that once was and all that has happened since, we ask you to think about all that can be.  KNOW that we have a long way to go but RECOGNIZE the progress we have made.
 
So many have done so much to help New Orleans rebuild.  One person can make a difference.  One person acting in concert with many, many others can make the impossible possible. And, in fact, there are many out there who as one person have made a great difference in the lives of children living in New Orleans.

As part of our “Back to School in New Orleans” campaign, this is the first in a series of short anecdotes about the children helped by one of our partner organizations, New Orleans Outreach and the volunteers and partners they utilize that are dedicated to making a difference in the lives of one – or thousands – of children each day.

Colby, a second grader at one of the schools  touched by New Orleans Outreach, decided he wouldn’t participate the salsa dancing class that Outreach offered because he thought it was “too girly.” He had heard his family ridicule boys who danced and he didn’t want to risk their disapproval.   Seeking a creative solution, our school Outreach coordinator offered Colby the position of salsa class sketch artist to document the class and his classmates’ performance. He showed up for class every day, dutifully drew pictures, detailing the movements of his classmates and writing out the rhythm used in the dances.

After about a week of watching his classmates and seeing how much fun they were having, he came to our coordinator and the salsa teacher and said,
 
“I think I’m ready to try it.” He jumped into the class with both feet and lots of rhythm, moving to the music with his second grade girl partner like a pro. At the end of the semester Colby was chosen as one of the top dancers in the class and got to participate in a special performance. His mom rushed up to him after the performance, beaming with pride, and told him how proud she was of him. Colby beamed right back.
What difference can you make in the life of a child this week?
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2 Comments

Filed under Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans, Uncategorized

2 responses to “Changing New Orleans One Child at a Time, Part I

  1. Pretty cool post. I just came by your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed browsing your posts.

    Any way I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon!

  2. Thank you. We typically post twice a week – on Tuesdays and Thursdays. If you ever have a topic about children you are interested in, please let us know!

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