Resilience in 30 Minutes
No, this is not some quick and easy “solution” or advice on how to become resilient. Sorry. That said, you may learn about individuals that are resilient in their own convictions to improve the lives of others.
Still with me? Cool. While I hope this inspires you to take action in some way, understand that I’ve published this for selfish reasons. By making public my thoughts as I’ve done here, I engender a sense of self-accountability that otherwise might not be. It is my own lifehack. Read on.
Every once in a while, we cross paths with certain people that seem to inspire in us the motivation to go further, to step up and do more in some way. I had such an encounter this week and wanted to record it here so that I can come back to it the next time I need a boost.
Recently, I met David Delmar, Founder of Resilient Coders, an organization that sources, educates and subsequently employs at-risk young adults, minorities usually, in the Boston area. Through partnerships with local organizations like The Boston Foundation, the Boston Police Department and several others, David is exposing these kids to web application design and development and in doing so, revealing to them the possibility of a future they might not have imagined for themselves.
This kind of work and community involvement is exactly what I believe can and will have a significant, long-term impact on the lives of minorities that grow up without privilege. It is the impact that I strive to make. When a mutual acquaintance offered to connect us, I jumped at the opportunity to learn from David.
In a short, 30-minute span, we were able to touch on meaningful concerns that we both shared for the clear lack of diversity in the Boston tech scene. This, coming from an individual who does not fit the demographics of any of the minority groups his efforts benefit, was also of significance to me.
Behind the calm demeanor, I sensed a person of action. In talking about how he sourced his students, I could tell he had spent countless hours, weeks and months developing relationships with local companies, organizations and community leaders to create a network that was not only aligned with his mission but one that could also support it. This is the kind of grit and resilience that I aspire to, the kind that gets things done.
Naturally, after just a half-hour meeting, I can’t say that I know David well or what drives him but that doesn’t really matter. His work is inspiring me to be resilient in my own pursuit to make a positive impact in the lives of fellow individuals of minority.
In the spirit of action, our short-term plans are to get a few of David’s students to attend the GoBridge workshop I’m organizing in Boston on May 21st and 22nd, 2016. We’ll see where our collaboration takes us from there but I have high hopes that we’ll be able to support each other’s mission in the future.
If you’re in the Boston area, are part of an underrepresented group in tech (people of color, women, transgender) and want to take a step towards breaking into the industry, I encourage you to sign up for the upcoming GoBridge event on May 21st and 22nd, 2016.
Be bold. Be resilient.