For as long as I have been alive (or so it seems), I have never quite fit in - to people's expectations or, to be honest, the cultural norms of our society. Whenever there is a form or questionnaire to fill out, most of my responses are either the "other" box or "N/A." This issue has continued by natural extension to Deep Root Center, the organization I founded and lead, as the Executive Director. And is the main reason I despise "officialdom."
Besides, "Not-for-Profit," DRC doesn't often fit neatly into any of the categories provided. And these forms issued by .gov organizations or financial institutions don't usually have "other" or "N/A" as options. Which means, by design, they don't offer a space where I can explain what, why, & how. And within that, the person on the other side processing the form has no latitude to make decisions on their own - based on what I would consider being common sense.
This rigidity frequently means we (DRC) miss out on opportunities that other businesses have automatic inclusion simply because they can check off all the boxes.
However, I believe that ultimately all the "officialdoms" and society, in general, will lose out because of their inherent inability to be flexible.
Diversity is the key to survival - diversity in not only appearance but thought, as well. Anyone with a basic understanding of biology recognizes this truth. If everyone fits effortlessly into the boxes provided and no one challenges the norms - our culture is doomed.
Cultivating an appreciation for scientific methodology, including an open mind and willingness to experiment, make mistakes, get messy, be wrong, and ultimately prove a replicable hypothesis, is essential to our ultimate endurance on this planet. Flexibility and the ability to "think outside the box," for the good of all, are undervalued and crucial talents.
At this point in my life, I am proud to say, "I refuse to fit inside your box." "I will be flexible, I will be creative, I will seek out new ideas, and I will lead by example." My default mode will always be - "how can I help you and, by extension, our community?"
*Note from Maria - a clarification from last week's Blog -
Last week, I was trying to make a point about our collective inability to seek out help - because, as a society, we judge it as a weakness and we see people as "abled" and disabled instead of viewing all of us as "differently-abled." I used the word "cheat" as the title to mean a "hack" or a way to think about or do something that works for us that may be different from the majority. Thank you to E., a frequent reader, for taking the time to point out that it also means being dishonest.
I want to be very clear that deceit and fraudulence are never OK. I apologize for any confusion and promise to work harder to avoid that type of unintentional error in the future.
Deep Root Center's Exploration Station is open for three weeks of summer programming this August - beginning 8/16 - 9/03. These services extend DRC's unique brand to children in the community who attend public or private schools. We have designed our Exploration Station Programs to offer opportunities for hands-on exploration, creativity, and fun that children crave. Information and registration are available through the Exploration Station button on the website. Register early - space is limited due to COVID safety precautions.
DRC is also once again offering Afternoon Programming at the beginning of the academic year. You can visit the website to learn more or contact us here. Please share this opportunity within your network.
DRC has various programs and services for families who are struggling within the public school system. Bottom line: we are here to help in any way that works for your family. Get in touch today to tell us your story and let us know how we can help.