Willow and River Sepinuck (who are both 5 years old I might add) came up to me a few months back and showed enthusiasm and interest in helping Renuka Dabli (9 year old) on her Diabetes Prevention Project. Needless to say, I do not get 5 year olds all the time who show interest in a project of this magnitude. It may be that Willow and River attend A.B. Combs-a Leadership Magnet School in Raleigh. It may be that they are just so darn thoughtful of others, and that they just want to make a difference no matter what their age. I think it is both. And Renuka...well, she is one of our super stars. She actually chose to do this project so that people would be more educated about Diabetes Prevention in honor of her dad who has the disease.
After many months of logistical conundrums, Willow, River and Renuka were able to teach their presentation to the assembly at A.B. Combs. This was a special day. I was able to sit to the side and assist the 3 children on their project, but I didn't run the show. See, teaching kids real leadership doesn't involve an adult who micro-manages, but one who guides. This was my role, and I am super proud of these kids.
I am also super proud that our martial arts school is teaching its students skills that will last them a lifetime. I can teach anyone to kick. In fact, we are darn good at that. Now, we want to be good-and even excellent at teaching students to take their skills they learn on the mat (you know, focus, discipline, self-control, passion for something, giving their "Level 10 Best") and apply them to things in the world that they care about. This is our mission. It may sound a little "corny." But, everyone needs a dream! In this day and age, kids need to continue dreaming!