Thursday, October 02, 2008
Boy With a Ball's New Website - An Important New Tool
Working in community development involves a whole lot of bridge building. First of all, you have to walk into a community and do the ethnographical work of getting to know the people, the place, the strengths and weaknessess, assets and threats. All of this builds a bridge of understanding that can provide a basis for what comes next. Second, you have to find a way to build a bridge into these people's lives. This involves finding a way to be allowed to be present.
Sometimes we try handing out suckers in areas full of children, providing tutoring where school dropout rates are high or handing out coffee and cookies in downtown San Jose, Costa Rica where the community is filled with sex workers, addicts and homeless individuals. In San Antonio, our teams head to the basketball courts all through the weeks.
The next bridge to build is one that allows deeper relationships to form. This bridge is made up of mutuality, empathy and trust. As this step occurs, mentoring and small groups are built to serve as bridges that allow us to equip and educate the community members to be leaders capable of turning around their own neighborhoods.
One final interesting connection to bridge is between the world at large and the community we are developing. This has taken us a while to "get" but nonetheless we are getting it.
With that in mind, please take a moment to head to our brand new web site at www.boywithaball.com. This exciting new tool is a bridge between you and those we are working with. In the future, they will need you. They will need your prayers, your resources, your friendship and your ideas if they are to see their communities transformed and developed.
This website will be updated weekly with new photos, videos, podcasts and more and will even include a Boy With a Ball store in weeks to come.
Go ahead and walk across this virtual bridge and get to know these amazing people.