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Opening Doors for Children & Families

Head Start 2012

Last night I was checking my online social networks and noticed some reposting of a video called 'Kony 2012.' I never watched it and I never thought much of it. This morning checking said social networks, said video had spread like wild-fire. Even one of the media outlets I follow had taken notice and posted the video. I was intrigued and had to watch what exactly had caused so many people to feel compelled to share.

I watched the video and thought it was powerful. Truth be told I shed a few tears because the injustices spoke of reminded me of stories and realities of some of the families attending ABC Head Start. Every refugee family who comes through ABC Head Start doors has a story so powerful it will bring you to tears. I have sat across the table at our agency from so many and listened to the unbelievable challenges they have faced and felt my heart ache for each of them and their children. There are families and stories who I will never forget.

After watching the video I was most certainly moved to learn more. I can't say I'm the type of person who watches a powerful and moving video and instantly feels a call to action. I need more facts. But the video did speak to me through its powerful message. At the beginning of the video the film maker says, "He didn't choose where or when he was born, but because he's here, he matters." Every child deserves the same opportunities, every child matters.

As I spoke about in my blog post, Occupy, this is what Head Start does so brilliantly. I have been challenged by people who have asked why does ABC Head Start only provide service to families living on limited incomes. My answer is simple, because low-income families do not have the opportunity to send their children to high quality early learning programs. And more over, research shows that there are significant gaps in learning between rich and poor even before Kindergarten.

In the 'Kony 2012' video the film maker states "Where you live shouldn't determine whether you live." And neither should the socio-economic status you are born into. If we know these significant gaps exist, especially in a province like Alberta, and a country like Canada, then why aren't we doing more about it? Every Head Start program has a wait list, we simply cannot meet the demand with the funding we currently have.

If you take nothing else away from 'Kony 2012' please at least ponder for a second what cause matters to you. As said in the video "A bunch of littles can make a huge difference." I absolutely believe this! Find one that moves you, that calls you to action, and be a part of shaping human history. Tell everyone you know because "awareness turns into action." It is absolutely the reason I write this blog, to share my cause. What's your cause?

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead

At ABC Head Start we believe the best way to help children is to strengthen families and community. As we work together in partnership we benefit from the shared enthusiasm, energy and ideas that each partner contributes. Community support ensures the continued success and sustainability of ABC Head Start. Every year volunteers donate thousands of hours of time in classroom and non-classroom activities. Find out how you can get involved today!

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