As the holiday season approaches and 2014 draws to a close, I look back on this year and reflect all that has happened.
One thing I look back on with pride is my brother, and what he has done within the last year.
My brother lives and works in Los Angeles. Like so many people there, he has professional connections in the film industry. Recently, however, he has somewhat separated himself from that industry so that he could work with and mentor underprivileged youth.
My brother was (and still is) a mentor to a young Hispanic boy for many years. As their relationship has developed, my brother found himself reaching out further to the needy youth of LA.
He now works full-time mentoring and helping youth. A fair percentage of the youth he works with are Hispanics. He also reached out to assist LGBT youth, understanding the difficulties and rejections that LGBT children and teenagers face.
I am incredibly proud of my brother. He broadened his horizons by reaching out to Hispanic and LGBT youth. The youngsters of our community, regardless of location, need strong mentors. As Latinos and Latinas, we need our children to look up to good examples. As LGBTs, we need to provide safety for our juveniles. We need to provide strength, assistance, inspiration, safety, and exemplify good leadership qualities in order to help our children thrive.
This is all especially true now as we come into the holiday season. Countless Hispanic and LGBT youth are struggling right now. They may not have enough food on the table. They may be homeless because their parents disowned them for being LGBT. There is such a tremendous need in our community. There is hope, though. The hope lies within us. Each and every one of us has something to offer these hurting children. We can donate money. We can donate clothes. We can donate food. We can donate time. Honestly, the list is endless. There is nothing we can’t do or give to help.
This is the season for giving. As my brother has shown me, giving to needing Hispanic and LGBT youth is one of the greatest gifts we will ever be able to give.
Live life in your own special way,