Last year, my son Caleb, who was 11-years-old at the time, was accepted into the National Junior Honor Society at his school. You can imagine how proud I was as his mom. He was given this incredible experience to learn leadership skills and give back to his local community.
The only challenge? Finding volunteer opportunities.
It was mandatory for each student to volunteer at least 15 hours each quarter. Caleb and I made a list of the causes he’d like to support and we started to reach out. I was pleasantly surprised when I inquired about him volunteering that many of the organizations turned him down. Their reasons? He wasn’t 12 yet. You had to be a certain age if you were going to be on-site helping. I know. Sounds a little ridiculous, right? If someone is capable and willing to help lend a hand, why would you turn them away?
After several emails and phone calls, we wound up somewhat empty-handed in the volunteer department.
Which led me to find a better way.
As a leader in the business community, I was also struggling with something. I was being pulled to different business events which meant leaving my family for hours on end to create more meaningful connections, then leaving again because I wanted to support so many causes and volunteer. Who has the time for all of THAT?
The mom and wife guilt was setting in big time. Then, the light bulb went off.
What if I created something for the community where ALL people, business owners, their spouses, friends and even children, no matter what age, could participate?
There wouldn’t be restrictions. It would literally be a way to CONNECT THE COMMUNITY by creating a win-win for local nonprofits needing an extra hand in the volunteer department, and inviting families and friends wanting to connect with like-minded souls to make an impact.
And that’s exactly what I called it.
Since creating Connecting through Community events in 2019, I’ve watched my family get more involved as well as several others spend their time packing and boxing meals together for Feed My Starving Children, sorting and assembling teacher back-to-school supplies for the Million Dollar Teacher Project, and assisting runners and walkers at the Bee Daring Foundation Project PHX 5K earlier this year, among other events lined up.
It’s true what they say. Where there’s a will, there is always a way. The only impossibility lies in us not making a move.
Rule of Life Lesson #116: