Being a grandmother of 12, my primary focus these days is what future generations are inheriting and what preparation they need to not only survive but thrive. During earlier years, I saw the major problem in the plight of African-Americans in this country was racism and the denial of equal rights to Black people. As a mother and grandmother that’s more aware of this country’s placing value of money and possessions over human life, I want more for them; to be a member of a community and country that places value on human life above dollars and things; a community which realizes that every human being is valuable and searches for the gift that each infant is born with; a community which realizes that the discovery and development of each and every child is not a favor to that child but a contribution to the community , nation and world.
Within the above setting, we see the important opportunity that parenting is. The role of parents and family assumes a much more influential role in shaping our homes and communities – transforming them from victims of gun violence, lifelong imprisonments, unemployment, perpetrators of gun violence to communities which value and respect the life of each and every person and contribute their talents (gift, intelligence) to the building of a better world – family by family; block by block; neighborhood by neighborhood – borough by borough – city by city. The truth of the matter is that parents – and adults who interact with youth – we will never hear it from the TV or radio news, but it begins with us.
For the next few weeks, we’ll focus on actions parents and caretakers can and are doing that promotes self-esteem and community building. The focus for this series is “From Home Base”. We’ll be looking for youth being given opportunity to discover and contribute their innate gifts in their families and immediate communities. We’ll be promoting a different route to changing the world……that of empowerment of a people, one child , one block, one community at a time. The following are ABCs for our journey. We invite readers to join and share with readers what your goals are, changes you want to make and current issues you want to resolve. Teleconferences will be held at intervals so e-mail Parentsnotebook@yahoo.com to indicate interest. Teleconference participants must have a specific situation they’re committed to resolving…..not a space for chitchat.
The following is an adaptation of the alphabet I came upon over twenty years ago. Author unknown. With only minor changes they remain as written. If anyone can identify the author, please let us know. The Notebook’s mission is to empower parents from home base because it is there, as in traditional African culture, the hope for our children lay in family and community regaining human values and healing relationships giving relevance to “Yes we Can”.
A – accept your child as s/he is; B – build up his/her confidence; C – cooperate with others who work with your child; D-direct her attention to improve her listening and speaking; E-establish understanding that tasks should be carried out to completion; F- forget about comparing your child to others; G-govern his discipline at home; H- help him to take pride in doing those things that he can do well; I– institute regular visits to libraries, museums and cultural activities; J- join your child in fun and games; K-keep directions simple so that your child can remember easily; L-let your child develop interests and hobbies ; M-mother but don’t smother; N-never give up on your child’s behavior; O-open all possible doors to help for your child; P-patience and perseverance are the traits for parents; Q– quiet child? Maybe good or maybe calling out for help by their silence; R – read materials to help you with your child; S –socially acceptable behavior should be encouraged; T-teach good health habits; U-understand that your child needs routine; V-verbally acknowledge all positive acts; W-watch your language-highly emotional words are easily learned by children; X –x-ray your state of mind – Does your attitudes help your child as a family member? At school? ; Y– you are unique; Z– zest for life and living must be shared by you with your child; feel good about yourself.
Special Note: Happy Birthday, Joanna Denise Williams, mother, wife, daughter, friend and overall caretaker for the company and the family! Thank you for all that you do from the team at DBG Media. You’re ageless! We love you.