3 YEARS LATER WHY FOREVER YOUNG PEOPLE?
3 years today. Wow. It’s actually crazy when you take a moment to sit and reflect on the journey so far!
3 years ago I set out with a vision of putting my work out into the world and I’m proud to see where we have come so far!
I’ve learned a-lot, made many mistakes, failed a few times and then some more but one thing I’ve not done, is quit.
Starting a business can be daunting, to put yourself out there. You learn a-lot about yourself. You will be challenged, you must be able to adapt and be prepared to the experience with an open mind.
This year has been the hardest but best to date. The team has grown with some fantastic characters with great knowledge and passion. We’ve sustained 3 more projects, delivered more workshops, mentored more young people and supported families. We have built wonderful partnerships and put on more community events. The football team got promoted and have started this season brilliantly. We also, won an AWARD!
During my life, personal and professional I have been fortunate enough to meet and work with many wonderful people from various backgrounds, cultures, settings and environments from all around the world. In this line of work, no two days or indeed no two people are the same and doing what I do really is the most rewarding and fulfilling aspect of my life but the reasoning behind this path was one that come from a childhood/adolescent years of pain and trauma, which ultimately shaped my adult years for growth and healing.
In truth, I just want to be able to do what I needed, when I was going through my adolescence. Growing up as a teenager is hard enough with pressures of school, future, friendships, relationships, families and the heightened expectation that everything is supposed to be perfect. Life is tough enough and when you throw in feelings, emotions and traumatic experiences, it becomes a whole different ball game. Sometimes, you are just unable to comprehend what is going through your mind or in your life but simply having someone there you can talk to, some guidance, reassurance that your life isn't falling apart or simply just having someone to tell you that everything is going to be okay.
Looking back on my younger years, I know this is something that would have helped. The main aims for me is bridge the gap between young people and the stigma of them within their communities and also within themselves. As times have changed, especially over the last 20/30 years in regards to technology and as beautiful as that has been, we have neglected our human need to connect and that doesn’t mean to WiFi but one another. Now is the time to raise awareness, our own and that of those around us. We need to start connecting from an educational prospectus. Education doesn’t mean just schooling or a diploma, education comes in many forms & I am in a big belief that everyday is a school day. There is something to learn from the moment we open our eyes in the morning until we close them when we go to bed, we just have to start becoming more aware of everything around us.
We need to educate ourselves in self love, self care and break those generational cycles so that we can pass on to the younger generations to aspire them to be better people in the future and provide a more homely earth because before the pandemic, the world felt like a constant distraction with everything available to us, at our finger tips. Now that things are easing, the past few months have allowed us to slow down and appreciate the more important things in life such as the human beings we hold nearest and dearest. Don't get me wrong, I do know how difficult it has been, I have also struggled personally as I love human connection & I found the transition to virtual meetings, very different to say the least. One thing it has given me though, is time to relax and plan for my next steps even though some days were a lot harder & I definitely went through my motions. The young people I spoke to were a mix bag, some absolutely loved it whilst others absolutely detested it. Now with some form of normality coming to, the trauma of this pandemic will have an affect through society with some believing society changing, for better or worse still remains to be seen.
The inspiration for the name ‘Forever Young People’ comes from my belief that no matter how much young people grow, the root of a person will remain ‘forever young’. The enthusiasm for what they do, the desire to impress, the willingness to learn and the passion to make a difference, will always be forever young. The young people of today are the future of tomorrow and they will be guiding the next generation after that and so forth. If we want a better tomorrow, we have got to do better today.
We all have to play our part and from the Greek proverb 'a society grows great when old men plants trees whose shade they know they shall sit never in'.
This is only the beginning! Lets get it.
Until next time