For a long time I would hope for things that I knew wouldn’t come true. Hope for me was like a wishing well that I tossed a nickel into whenever I needed motivation or a happy place to daydream in. I would hope for change, for a lack of change, for girls to like me or to be picked first in dodgeball.

Alateen has helped me to redefine hope in my life. As I learn more about only being able to change myself, I am discovering what I think is “true” hope—a very actionable, self-focused hope. One that gives me the deeper inspiration to make change instead of just resting on my laurels and arbitrarily wishing my problems away.

As I learn about the most inspirational and prolific people in history, I am discovering that the “good Samaritans” who change the world for the better all have one thing in common—they are doers. They don’t just wait around for things to improve. They plant their feet firmly in their own sides of the street and see what they can do to turn their hopes into reality. These doers give me courage in the right ways, and I hope to use the tools in my Alateen toolbox to improve myself and leave a lasting mark in this world.

By Anonymous

The Forum, November 2017