Three days ago, many of my friends gathered at various rallies to participate in the Women’s March 2018. Protesters – women and men – took to the streets across the country for a variety of reasons. Some were there to protest Trump. Others were there to show their disapproval of policies that negatively impact women. I’ll admit that I don’t participate in marches or rallies unless they are for a very specific cause but I respect and appreciate those who exercised their constitutional right to do so. (On a side note, the protest signs were so creative!) I just hope that the same enthusiasm causes people to march to the voting booths during the midterm elections!
Beyond the marches, rallies, and voting, I also want to encourage you to find ways that you can cause change at the local level. It could change your life in a great way. It did for me. Many of my friends who were not happy with the 2016 Presidential election results wondered and discussed what we could proactively do. Since education was the issue that I felt most strongly about, I decided to get involved on the local level.
After praying, I decided to suck it up (I don’t like meetings) and attend a Parent Leaders meeting last March. I was so encouraged to see how many parents wanted to make sure that NYC kids didn’t bear the brunt of possible educational changes. I ended up running for a seat on the educational council. After answering questions and discussing my positions at a public forum, I was later elected. As a result, I am currently a Vice President of Community District 28’s Education Council.
The truth is that I would have never considered running if I wasn’t so dismayed by the direction that education is currently taking in this country. (Did I mention how much I dislike meetings?) Public schools are not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but I love my council’s Working Together for the Good of All Children motto. I enjoy working with other public school parents to advocate on behalf of our communities, students, and schools. I appreciate being able to have a say in the Department of Education’s policies. Visiting my assigned district schools and connecting with the principals, teachers, parents, and students have been invaluable. In essence, I would have missed out on what is now one of my current favorite roles if I had not stepped outside of my comfort zone.
I’m so grateful that I “raised my hand” and applied to run for a seat on the education council. If there is something that you really don’t like politically, consider what you can do within your sphere of influence…and go raise your hand to do it!