Building Bridges: How Will You Help Your Community?

At the 9th Annual New London Talent Show, Franc Grams opened with the following performance sharing a truth too many children in this country know as their reality. It was a perspective some of you reading this will never have considered, will think it complete crap, or will understand personally, depending upon your background and socio-economic status growing up and currently.

Take a moment to listen.



After hearing this, I couldn’t stop thinking of all the people in the piece: Little Homie, his mom, his dad, his cousins, his teachers, his neighbors, his aunts and uncles. I thought of the people like Franc who bring the truth to the surface. And I thought of all the audience members that evening – a sold-out crowd of 1400+.

When we hear things like this, we shouldn’t feel sad for a moment and then move on with our lives. When we hear things like this and it moves us, it’s time to respond and do something about it. Any one of the people represented could be who you feel passionate about helping. I find when a situation angers me or makes me feel sad, I am usually reacting to something within me that has a passion for the subject. I then dig deep with myself and reflect upon what I am reacting to and think about how I can respond.

There are so many ways to get involved with our community. And not all of the ways mean directly engaging with people. I know some people are better behind the scenes. Maybe you know how to pull money together to fund a program that can keep youth off the streets and give them something beneficial and empowering to do. Maybe you know how to rally people behind a cause and can help people show up to Board of Ed meetings to help your city do better with their budgets and fund programs and schools more adequately. The problem is so much bigger than our educators and school sytems, as this reaches inside homes and to parents who aren’t there for their children. The problem isn’t just Little Homie’s problem, but all of ours.

I challenge each of us to think about how we can help within this probelm. OR, if you weren’t moved by the video, think about a situation that does move you and for which you are passionate and think about how you can build bridges in your community between the people who have a problem and the people who have a solution to the problem.




Featured Image by Viktor Hanacek (; Premium collection)


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