Chi Does Good: Finding Actions in Our Emotions
The death of George Floyd sparked some long overdue calls for reform and equality. In many people, it sparked a range of emotions, guilt, disappointment, and even anger. All emotions can have both positive and negative impacts. It is important to acknowledge all our feelings, and then figure out what to do with them. In cities, worldwide, thousands of people channeled their emotions into actions through demonstrating and protesting, to posting messages of support, finding and sharing resources, by engaging in dialogue, donating and so much more.
Many members of the Camp Chi Family have channeled their emotions to engage with constructive measures in the push for true equality. Benjamin “Beb” Bluman, a longtime camper and staff member, wanted to find a way to impact one crisis while not ignore the other. He started Masks for Marchers, an organization dedicated to giving masks to people in marginalized communities and participating in the peaceful protests all around the country. In less than 10 days, he created the organization, raised over $950 and was able to secure over 750 masks to get to marchers. You can find out more and help Beb by visiting the Masks for Marchers Facebook page.
Just yesterday, Olivia “Liv” Gork, another longtime camper and staff, organized an event that happened in Highland Park. Liv had people, including many of her camp friends, gather in downtown Highland Park to hang and distribute educational flyers filled with resources that people can use to take action in the fight for social justice and racial equality. The group took this time to engage in conversations with local community members and educate each other. Those that didn’t feel comfortable coming out, helped support the cause by donating dollars and tools to help with the process. They raised so much money that they picked an organization called SNaPCo, a Black Trans and Queer led collaboration to push equal rights, freedoms and opportunities amongst this community. There’s nothing more exciting that using people power to educate ourselves and others for the benefit of the greater good.
We are so proud to showcase our family who are showing us how actions can speak louder than words. While words can be seen on our social media accounts, actions can have a long-lasting impact. Actions don’t just have to mean going out and protesting or marching. It can mean using this time to educate yourself. There are documentaries and movies about racial equality on many streaming services. Some of our favorites are Hidden Figures, Selma, 42, Just Mercy,13th, Remember the Titans, and The Color of Friendship. And we have seen countless lists of books that can help educate both kids and adults. You can also donate to organizations that help promote equality and continue the fight for racial justice. And most importantly, you can do more than just talk or write a post- you can listen. Have conversations with others who are different than you or have different experiences or ideas than you do in a constructive way. That means you are really listening to hear them, and then create a dialogue with them. There is great material about constructive conflict and working through differences through 9adar.org.
As we have said, Camp Chi stands for respect, treating all people with kindness, and embracing the diversity of our community. We stand for those things not just at camp, but also in the world around us. We stand against racism, we stand for inclusion, we stand with our fellow campers, staff, families, alumni, the Black community, and all who are discriminated against. We would encourage you to channel your emotions, push for change, and engage in constructive conversations. In a world that seems broken and unjust, there is a way to use emotions and turn them in actions that spur change so that we cannot just embrace but truly live the core values of Camp Chi.
Camp Chi has other resources available as well. We are always here to help. Contact us anytime.
For other ways to give back and show that Chi Does Good, click here.