Well here we are with day 2, and I already hear myself speaking in a Canadian/British Accent. I've never been good at impersonating accents, but like others, I seem to be second-handedly picking them up. Don't be surprised if I come home with an inflection in my voice.
Today's word: Emotional
We woke up early for breakfast, and many people were not ready in time. I mentioned on Facebook that I was very proud of the those who stepped up and grabbed some breakfast from the dining hall for those who would have missed it. A shout out to my mom: Prior to this trip she had given me a bag of granola bars (I love goody bags!). Well it came in handy when I was able to pass those around as well. Go team ISYIC!!! I'm naturally inclined to be the prepared one, and I share very willingly. I like those qualities :-)
Going to DC was fun we met at Georgetown Law School for a conversation with Senator Landrieu, who is a proven advocate for youth in care, not only in the USA but across the world. Then we granted some wishes for DCYouth via an organization called One Simple Wish. Please check them out, they are working very hard to grant wishes for youth in care. Its much like the make a wish network, plus you never age out of their organization. So whether you are 16, 18, 21 or 55 you can make a wish on their website. If you're looking for some great organization to support, please consider One Simple Wish.
During Lunch, we heard from many of the International Delegates, and I was inspired. Here is a little about what the last few years for me since graduating from college have been like. I went from feeling as though I could change the world, and capable of great things to a wounded, not confident about her work individual. I didn't have enough structure! So, I've lost some of that glow and some of that passion. I can honestly say that I've gained some of that back in the last three days. I noticed that during lunch, when my now friends were speaking.
Another outcome of this lunch session was that I was able to reflect back on how my own wishes, very small ones, have been granted in the form of a desk and the permission to do what I want with my own hair.
After lunch, we took a tour of congress. I got to see the Whispering chamber, and a few of the old meeting rooms. Most importantly we had the wonderful opportunity to meet Foster Youth Interns who are currently interning with the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute. They have the opportunity to work directly with policy makers during the summer to draft policy briefs and to educate them about what life in care is like.
All in all today has been trying, emotional and inspiring. I hope that my glow comes back fully by the time I come home to Pennsylvania. I have an opportunity to fully lead a dream of mine. I haven't really talked about it much here at ISYIC (#ISYIC on twitter!) http://www.youthincaresummit.info/. I will be the project manager for the Pennsylvania Youth Advisory Board. In some ways, I think that God has used my experiences in the past year to humble me. It is only in this posture of humility that I would be able to pick up this project and truly implement youth and alumni engagement in this amazing program. I have finally connected the dots, and I cannot wait to build the capacity of youth in care.
This is a lot, and does not meet with blog brevity standards, but I hope that you get the gist of what today and what this summit is about.