Invest in Our Future by Investing in Others

We often have conversations around investing in ourselves to become successful individuals. However, we need to get back to investing in our communities so that we can all become successful. In American culture, we treat success as a “dog eat dog world”. One in which we are encouraged to “trample the competition”. But in many Native cultures, on our land and across the globe, the tribe was only successful if all their people were successful. Rather than fight like dogs to rise to the top, they work together so that all benefit.

Lend a Hand

The underprivileged suffer the most and yet that’s where some of the most incredible success stories could be waiting. The underprivileged are often living in unhealthy conditions and in violent and unsafe situations. When we empower them to rise above and find their own successes, we find them changing their environment to be safer and healthier. People want to feel safe and have their basic needs fulfilled. So, what do those of us who have more do? How can we empower them to overcome their situation and share with others how to be equally successful? The short answer is, we lend a hand.

The Hardest Question is How?

So how do we empower people to improve their situation? It comes in a multitude of ways. Native Americans often would supply their poorest neighbors with whatever need they had. If their corn crop had not done well that year, at harvest the rest of the tribe would give them a portion of their own crop so they would have plenty to eat. If someone did not hunt enough buffalo and lacked hide for clothing, the rest of the tribe provided. As of now, many of us do that. We take clothes to homeless shelters, we knit scarves and deliver them on the streets in the coldest months. We work in soup kitchens and we donate food. Some even check on their neighbors to see if they have enough firewood and warm stew on a chilly winter night. And when it’s sweltering, we check to make sure our people are cool. That’s just the beginning of the empowerment.

Education is Key

The one thing that saves the underprivileged is education. Providing training for some service industry jobs would help people find a sense of accomplishment. Some of those jobs can be:

  • Massage
  • Hair styling
  • Makeup artistry
  • Nail technician
  • Auto mechanic repairs

Give a man or woman a spa pedicure chair and they can find a way to make a living! Hand a man or woman some shears and they can cut hair and feel like they are a part of their community.

Obtaining the license and education is often what holds back the underprivileged. Due to a lack of resources, they simply may not be able to attend and get ahead. Investing in the education of others can only make the community improve and the economic situation soar. We should create small community scholarships to help someone attend college or trade school. If we have a skill that can be shared, we should be mentoring those who need it.

It is a great disservice to our community to sit back and watch our neighbors slowly wither away due to a lack of resources. We all share this planet and we should be working hard to take care of one another and share the feelings that come with a successful day. If we don’t, we continue to contribute to all that is wrong in our society!

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