Fourteen people in a circle.
One of those is Tom. He is just out of jail. Jan is gay. Sally’s a millionaire. Osman is a Syrian refugee. Patrick loves Trump. Rick is a police officer. Bob is in the NRA and Jasmine is in Black Lives Matter.
Of course, they don’t know this about each other. They signed up for The Red Boot Challenge because something about the current state of the world is negatively impacting their lives…their relationships, their peace of mind.
This is their second hour together and they are answering some questions…one of those is “Why do you matter?”
After some awkward silence, the responses begin.
“I matter because my children rely on me.”
“I matter because I keep people safe.”
“I matter because I exist.”
“I matter because I am a child of God.”
For ten more weeks, this group will meet, share, listen to each other.
Rick, our police officer, has seen a change in how he does his work. “Red Boot has taught me the power of listening first; to empathize with the anger in our black neighborhoods rather than resist it…to get outside of my uniform and see the pain there. Red Boot is, from my perspective, saving lives.”
Osman shares, “I’ve learned to listen to those who fear me because of my Muslim Faith. Listening builds trust and over time friendships.”
Jan also shares. “I’ve struggled with being excluded from my family because I’m gay. Red Boot has shown me that I do matter…that in fact I am beautiful just the way I am.
We have only a few spots left for our first ever 12-week Red Boot Challenge in Charlotte. We kick it off February 13th. (We will be offering it again in the fall.) (our other cities will have the opportunity to begin offering this fall.)
Please sign up at www.theredbootcoalition.org/red-boot-challenge.