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Saturday, October 30, 2010

Francisco Diaz Volunteers in Arizona, Youth in Action

Francisco Diaz,

Promise Arizona

Francisco Diaz, Promise Arizona

 “I am where I am supposed to be” he told me shortly before getting onto a jet plane and heading home to California.  Francisco Diaz is a charismatic young person who wants to make a difference.  He volunteered to be a Paz Fellow with Promise Arizona.  Three face-paced weeks were over and his time with the organization was through. 

    “I will be back” Francisco said. 

     It had been a battle.  He was assigned to Yuma, Arizona, near the U.S. Mexico Border.  It is rough going there because there is so much fear, and there is so much hunger.  When you have success you feel like you have really made a difference.  Just one signature on a form and it is like the whole world opens up and changes.

    After multiple rejections one day Francisco was able to get the signature of a man he met in the park.  At the end of his few minutes with this stranger, this is what Francisco said:

“This man, who had never voted, who was long unemployed, who had mentioned needing a way to get milk for his daughter, had proudly showed me a picture of his little girl while I was registering him; and that he had bothered to fill out something like a seemingly mundane form for the first time in his 52 year old life, and for a 20-something stranger who has never had to worry where his next meal was coming from filled me with so much emotion that I could no longer stand to hold back the tears of gratitude for his courage anymore.”

    Come help make the difference in the lives of young people.  The one who will change the most is you.  In the process, you can bring a message of hope to those who have suffered injustice in our country! 

    Get involved.  Fight for the Dream Act!  Work towards immigration reform. (CIR).  Stop cross border trafficking in prostitution.  There are a lot of things each one of us can do to make this a better world. 

     Every state, every city, needs help getting out the vote, helping those who don’t understand the system have a chance to participate.  In Denver we have an organization called CIRC, Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition.  You won’t have to go far to find an organization where you can make a difference!

     The question for each of us, “where is my place?”

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