Today as we finish another academic year, this post is dedicated to all the folks who commit their time, dollars, and emotional support to me and Deep Root Center. If it wasn't for them, DRC would not exist.
Friday, as Karen was leaving our final gathering of the 22/23 year, she said, "You are driven to do this." I, of course, protested. But she insisted that because DRC is "my baby," I am dedicated to its survival in a different way than others. And I understand what she means - to a point.
Within the exhaustion, frustration, and, yes, deep anger, I am driven to help as many kids as I can - escape traumatic, unhealthy, or tedious educational situations - so they are free to discover the wonders and excitement of learning - as well as their own pure awesomeness. Because we all deserve that!
But quite honestly, that drive is fueled by all the hordes of folks who have helped along the way these last 10(!) years. If not for them, I would have been defeated long ago. Although it may appear, from the sidelines, that this is a one-woman show, the reality could not be further from the truth.
Deep gratitude to Christopher Raymo, who returned to DRC-Canton this year after a few, quite literally preserving my hide (and sanity). He is the kindest, most steadfast guy who can think on his feet, solve virtually any problem, and is adored by every kiddo at the Center. He does it all without fuss, humbly, and always with a smile.
I will be forever indebted to Karen Gagne and her sidekick Trader for agreeing to return to St. Lawrence County to so very capably take on the leadership of DRC-East. She endured and shined through the move from the church in North Lawrence to the new location at the Massena Housing Authority, several kids transitioning in and out of the Center, and the multitude of everyday challenges that make up life at DRC - with kindness, unwavering dedication to the kids, and always with grace.
I am grateful to the people and organizations who contribute to our bottom line - whether through seasonal donations, monthly contributions, sponsorships, grants, or support of one of our fundraisers. Quite plainly - without money, we could not do our work.
Thanks to our board members - several of whom are brand new and a couple who have been here since the beginning - for taking on this enormous task of keeping DRC fiscally viable, jumping in to help with various projects, and always having my back. I greatly appreciate their support and am delighted to call them my friends.
And finally, thank you to all the DRC kids and their families. If it wasn't for their willingness to "jump ship," try something completely different, and trust the process - there would be no reason for us to exist. Every kid is excited to be here, supporting each other as they learn, grow, and explore all the possibilities together. These kiddos make all of our days a little brighter.
So, as we finish another year (that flew by) of amazing accomplishments - I can only say, Thank You All for sticking with me on this crazy ride!
Weekly Creative Meditation
Have a fantastic summer! We will be back in August for Canton Summer Program and then our Regular Programs will begin September 5th. If your family would like to join us - please get in touch.
Look for our collaborative art piece at the Heritage Park Whimsical Art walk in Canton. It will open on June 10th - with a celebration and party and will remain up for two months during the summer. Thank you to Anneke L. of Grasse River Heritage for inviting DRC to participate.
Thank you (so far) to Potsdam Agway, High Peaks Winery, and ABCD Hardware and Supply for hosting DRC donation buckets. Please support these community minded businesses and while you are there - drop a little love in our buckets. Thank you!
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