The Preakness is barely over and there are already whispers about moving the second jewel of the Triple Crown out of Baltimore, possibly to Laurel. Some of these voices were heard on Twitter right after the riots decrying the dangerous neighborhood around Pimlico and how the city was just too dangerous. It was and still is an outrageous thought.
So outrageous it prompted one of my former teachers, Teresa Genaro, to write in defense of Baltimore titled, “Why has this happened?” for theracingbiz.com. Meanwhile, shops are trying to rebuild and reopen, summer vacation is coming soon and we soon face another problem: what these kids will do with their time all summer.
It’s no secret there are fewer recreation centers and activities offered at low or no cost. Although some may have the funds to keep their children proactively occupied during the summer, we must remember that so many families in lower socioeconomic neighborhoods such as mine don’t always have such options. Camps are expensive, summer school is a punishment, and, in addition to being costly, sports teams can sometimes play too far away. Now, imagine adding those to a home where no one is available to make sure a child gets to any of these programs or makes sure they stay involved.
This is not some imaginary scenario, but rather things I have seen over the years in my neighborhood and as a cheer coach for Pop Warner. When I speak to the kids in the neighborhood and ask why they aren’t participating in (insert activity here), their responses are blessedly honest. They express the desire, but acknowledge lack of available time from family members, cost, and issues regarding transportation. Other times, it is simply a lack of knowledge about programs keeping a child out of an activity.
I firmly believe in the power of information and how it and be the difference between a successful and full life rather than one filled with void and regret. Over the past 11 years I have listened to or read countless books on the subjects of business success and personal development. Surprisingly, the concepts transfer from one area to another. One of my favorites right now is by Brian Tracy and is titled, “Change Your Thinking, Change Your Life.” It’s a simple concept but requires faith and practice. The thing is you could have all you have ever wanted in the world, but if your mindset isn’t right, then you cannot move forward.
Such as it is with knowledge and information. Some of us are great at finding and sharing what we have found; others may just need access to the information. This is where my grand idea for helping my neighbors and other city residents (and eventually the nation) comes into play. This is where I get to use my God-given talents and abilities to make a difference.
In that vein, and starting with my fellow veterans, I am relaunching my health coach business. Many have expressed a desire to have a holistic or whole-person approach to help them take charge of their own wellness. I hope you will pray for me and the veterans I serve.
Let me know what you think!