Occasionally on this blog I'll talk about my love for women's issues, identity, LGBT folk, and other topics relating to social justice. Something I haven't talked much about is how all of that started for me.
I was a nerdy kid. We'd moved around a lot, and changed schools a lot (8 schools in K-12!) so I never really had a chance to find my people. My posse, the ones who'd stick up for one another and anti-bully for one another. It was rough. I'd always fought it in my own ways, by doing things like sticking up for those who were getting teased more, etc but that would only work for a short time until I ended up switching schools again.
In the 7th grade I saw a "Differences: Gotta Have 'Em!" presentation by the ARCh Youth Team and suddenly that changed a bit. Here were people who recognized that it was ok to be geeky, or chubby, or have a disability. The presentation made a huge impact on me and I immediately joined the Youth Team. I spent many, many, many hours volunteering for the organization through the rest of middle and high school.
|A group of us after a Differences: Gotta Have 'Em! presentation|
|Me, performing the Balloons skit|
This weekend is the 25th Anniversary of the Youth Team's beginnings. I've somewhat lost touch with them since I graduated from high school and am looking forward to going back, seeing old friends, finding out what the YT is up to these days, and perhaps sharing with its current members the impact that it still has on me today.