Back to Selma

After a week off, the Foundation is back in swing and we’re back in Selma with 10 interns! I just met them all but they seem like a great group. It takes a special person to come here for the summer, so no surprise!

They’ve had a few days of orientation where I was able to talk to them about my experience last summer. I helped with Art Camp and Hairspray last summer, and it taught me a lot about how to build a healthy, lasting relationship with kids. I told the interns not to come in with expectations for how their relationships will look, especially since the kids they’re working with will likely be going through some home situations when they come to Art Camp next week. Just come in ready to love them, and they’ll give back to you so much more. They all really have a heart for the kids and are excited about nonviolence training!

We’ve also been working on booking more people/groups for the interns to train in nonviolence. It looks like we’ll have a decent number of local teachers to train, which is great! The trainers feel a lot about the education system – the children don’t come to school knowing how to deal with conflict and the school can’t teach them how to deal with conflict because the teachers don’t know how to deal with conflict either. Members of the Foundation are working to create a curriculum geared toward children so that nonviolence/conflict resolution can be implemented into the classrooms.

We’ll start the interns’ (and other guests’) nonviolence training next week! And we started our rehearsals for the RATCo show Hairspray, which has a huge cast and is going to be a ton of fun!

Being back in Selma is always a breath of fresh air in a way, because this place means so much to me. But it’s also definitely a slap of reality to see the run down houses and to feel the history of racial tension in the city. It always touches my heart to think of what I found here and know that there are so many kids in this city that need a family and a hope like what RATCo gave me.

Sam Lee ’16