Beyond mountains

There’s a book we love. It’s called, Mountains Beyond Mountains: Healing the World; The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer by author Tracy Kidder .  Farmer is an infectious disease specialist. He has done extensive work in the poorest and sickest parts of Haiti, founding Partners in Health, an organization that battles the most life-threatening diseases of the poor. Mountains Beyond Mountains should be bookshelf material for anyone with a cause in mind. Creating change is uphill work that takes more than rhetoric and grand ideas. The work starts on the ground and requires a sustained organizational commitment.  The kids we work with at the Media Awareness Project, don’t (by most accounts) have a lot. But it often isn’t what a person has access to that makes the difference in their life. There is brain function involved…a willingness and ability to think through problems and an incredible persistence in applying whatever solutions they come up with. These strengths can be developed in our young people, along with traits of empathy, compassion, courage, honesty and committment to telling the truth. That’s why it was important as we developed MAP to create a program that not only taught the tools of production and media literacy, but to include components of mentorship and peer-directed learning.  It’s incredible to see what these kids come up with when you ask them to discuss their stories, feelings and life experience.


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