Alright i never wrote my HOBY story but after this weekend i think it is necessary. I went through HOBY in 2009. I went with my older sister Abbey early in the day and got to meet the whole staff before everyone else. It was incredible. Since I was there early all of the staff knew my name. I remember later in the day when everyone had already arrived Jad Allen remembered that I didn’t the HOBY welcome. So he did it in front of everyone. I remember this moment as the moment I fell in love with HOBY. It was the greatest weekend of my life. I have never met so many amazing people in my entire life. It made me a better person and there is no way I can repay the people who made it happen. The reason I go back every year is to at least try to give back as much as I recieved. When I got home the first time my sister asked me what I thought and I instantly asked her how to sign up next year. The next year of HOBY was then again the best weekend of my life. Better than the first. I thought to myself how incredible HOBY was and how much it has changed me for the better. It has formed what I want to with my life and how amazing it is to help people. It has also brought me so much closer to my sister Abbey Walsh. I don’t know how to describe our relationship before HOBY but after these three years of HOBY I truely know how much she cares about me. She is amazing and HOBY has shown me this. This year for HOBY it was by far even better than the first two times. It brings people together like nothing else. I have become a better person from this experience and have come to look at life another way and I thank HOBY for that.
Why is service important to a community? Why is it such a special treat when over 200 teenagers get together with peers and adults to work together to achieve a common goal, a better tomorrow through working today? Our teenagers receive such a bad rap from the media. You can’t go a day without seeing a story about the misdeeds of a teen, or the shortcomings of a young adult. Death, theft, anger, hatred and misfortune pervade our media and it seems that the teens really don’t ever get highlighted for the good that they do. Cue the Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Organization and our annual Day of Service. We had multiple groups head to multiple sites around the DFW Metroplex to do service projects at Mission Arlington, Wildscapes, the Ft. Worth Forestry Project, North Texas Volunteer Center and the Community Enrichment Center. Each group headed out into the community to show that teens can really make a difference and aren’t just a negative statistic. I was afforded the opportunity to lead a team of 12 ambassadors from the organization in a tree planting and re-mulching project at the Arlington Wildscapes. It was a great experience for me and the rest of the ambassadors and we could definitely see the happiness and thankfulness of those we volunteered for. At the end of the day, HOBY Texas North contributed over 1000 hours of service to the Metroplex. This is truly outstanding.
Sticks and stones taught a lot about how just ONE WORD can make a difference. at the end of day two I asked the ambasadors to give me one word that describes HOBY so far. this is what they told me:
Crazy awesome times four!
Friggin’ awesome (with a G!)
Crazy epic…CREPIC…it’s a contraction.
So those are just a few reactions to HOBY (and from the very beginning too) The weekend was a HUGE success and was truly life changing. You haven’t experienced the real power of youth, until you’ve seen our future leaders stepping up to become our current leaders!
Well let me say my closing statements: I come from a school of the minority; children who have a low income family and who self-esteems are very low. These children “roast” on each other everyday because that’s all they know. We are thankful that at least 40% of student graduate; parents doesn’t have college experience, therefore the children don’t have anything to look up to. And cheers and happy people are the last thing on their mind. Fortunately, two students from my school attended HOBY this year and, after hearing all the things about it, they wasn’t sure about it because to them, jumping up, being excited, and not judging each other is foreign. However, after these three days, I can say, and they can say, that HOBY has change their lives completely. If HOBY can get students from my school to cheer and go out their comfort zone, and want to come back for that HOBY fix, then HOBY is exactly what everyone needs to experience. Once again, I am happy to be apart of HOBY and so are others. I will continue to support HOBY and tell others about my HOBY story. Thank you HOBY and I love you guys!!
Taylor - You put together an OUTSTANDING program! You had a vision to bring speakers, panels, and activities together and impact our Ambassadors in a way that could inspire them to change the world. From what I have seen, you did just that. And you did it so well that you have inspired me and others to take this message to a national level. I am very proud of you!
Laura - You are simply a rock. Well, not a rock that just sits there, gathering moss. But a rock that weathers every storm, that anchors the largest of ships, and that shows others were to go. You have, in my opinion, earned the title of “MOST DEPENDABLE” with your dedication, follow thru, and some really kick ass spreadsheets!
Ambassadors are now listening to an excellent panel about Innovative Thinking. This panel will discuss the importance of innovation in our personal and professional lives and how we can transform ideas into action! Lunch will be in a few minutes! After that, we will be heading out to perform service at our many sites!
Charles Pierson challenged us all to do great things with our lives. When describing a cementerey and a tombstone, he asked, “What are you going to do with your dash?” We can do great things, but we must be willing to “be the change you want to see in the world,” as Ghandi said!
i like your blog, please check out the first anonymous social network support group called shareascare.com and join a community like no other, made up of individuals going through similar things as yourself or become a friend/supporter of somebody that may really need your companionship, or simply help us spread the word about our message that no one has to be alone...thank you!
“Are incisive, derogatory comments posted by a group member of a public blog such as facebook the responsibility of the group creator? Or is it exercise of the 1st amendment?”—Summer Elmazi (On cyberbullying)
Summer Elmazi currently serves as the Corporate Board President of HOBY Texas North. I am in my fourth year with HOBY Texas North and have served as Corporate Board Secretary and a Senior Facilitator for the last three years. I am currently assigned as a felony prosecutor to the 292nd Judicial District Court with the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office. I am the worst joke-teller in the world, I love Harry Potter and the Mavs, and I tap coffee directly into my veins. I have three younger sisters and I talk wickedly fast. What’s most important is that I love HOBY Texas North and I am proud to be part of a group of endearing, heartfelt, energized, catalytic, compelling BFFs, Thank you so much for this chance and I have high expectations to make this one of the best Seminar HOBY Texas North has ever seen.