BENEFITING: Martin Richard Foundation
ORGANIZER: Martin Richard Foundation
EVENT: Team MR8 Boston 2017
EVENT DATE: Apr 17, 2017
When I was 8 years old, I was really athletic, but somehow seemed to throw up every time I ran a mile. Fast forward 20 plus years and nothing much has changed. I never thought I could or would run a marathon until April 2013.
While I was born and raised in southern California, I spent most of my adult life in Boston. I really loved that dirty water, and Boston really was (and still is) my "home". AmeriCorps took me to an elementary school in Dorchester in 2007 and that experience sold me on the city. It was the city that inspired me to go to social work school, and it was those teachers from my first year in DOT that convinced me to do my social work internship at Neighborhood House Charter School.
I've always been obsessed with quotes, and when I was in college, my parents got me a bracelet that said "Be the change you wish to see in the world". I was wearing that bracelet (as I did every day of grad school) when I walked into Ms. Moo's 2nd grade classroom in the fall of 2011. The room was filled with quotes and lessons on social justice and I soon found myself hanging out in there whenever I had free time. I would sneak Martin's reading group into the hall and convince them to play "ninja" instead of read (clearly I wasn't supposed to be a teacher) and help rehearse Ms. Moo's famous songs like "the anti-bully crew". This 2nd grade classroom embodied why I wanted to become a social worker.
In April of 2013, I ended up sitting on the rug of that same 2nd grade classroom - the one where we had spent so much time reading and talking about social justice - now, discussing a whole new reality, with a whole new group of 2nd graders. Martin, the youngest victim of the Boston Marathon bombings that April, was in 3rd grade - only 8 years old.
People often ask why I went in to social work, and my answer is always the same: the kids. Kids are resilient, and kids give me hope. No child wants to be the "bad kid"; it is our responsibility to make sure kids know how amazing they are and how much good they can bring to the world. We have the privelege to inspire our children to be peacemakers and bridge builders. We have the awesome opportunity to make tomorrow a better day for our children.
Family eventually brought me back to Southern California, but a big part of my heart is still in Boston. I thought there wasn't anything that would ever inspire me to run a marathon, yet here I am. I have hope that future generations will make this world a better place, and I hope that somehow, along the way, I can be part of the change I wish to see in the world.
Please support me, and more importantly TeamMR8, by making a donation today! #AllInForMartin
MARTIN W RICHARD CHARITABLE FOUNDATION INC:
Donations made to our runners on Team MR8 Boston 2017 ensure that the Martin Richard Foundation continues its mission of investing in athletics, education and community by empowering youth and adults to improve the lives of others and become bridge builders, peacemakers and leaders in their communities.