So yesterday was pretty magical. It was the first day of summer and though the weather gods were not totally compliant, we still had fun. Zully JF Alvarado of @causesforchange and I made it back from Pittsburgh to participate in a truly inclusive program that had folks from all over Gary, as well as all of Lake, Porter and LaPorte Counties participating. 6/21 happened to also be the second anniversary of our accessible kayak launch’s installation. When we originally fundraised for this we had no idea how it would expand and the wonderful ways it would enrich our neighboring communities. 2018 has been very educational to say the least. I’ve always considered myself a realistic optimist. It is easy to see how cynics are created in climates like #NWI. No one is going to hand us our future and the odds are truly stacked against collaborative, honest efforts. Here’s the thing though, community outlasts administrations. Community cannot be prefabricated, it is fostered. It needs to be nurtured with the vigilance of a #TigerMom. The strides we’ve made in three years, with very limited resources are confusing to the mainstream. We don’t fit into any easy category and that’s fine because we are truly reflective of the mosaic that is #DaRegion. Cheers to many years of collective impact. Happy summer days!