When people ask me how I’ve gotten to this point in my life and career, all I can say is, “I am a product of everyone who’s helped me.”
That is the absolute truth. I believe in the power of community and how doing for others and others doing for you is how we move forward in the world. That’s the great thing about community, it knows no limits and it’s available to everyone regardless of background.
When my sister, wife, and I started Future Foundation, we did it with the intent to give back, and although I haven’t lived in Georgia for years, it’s the place that shaped me into who I am today. It’s the place I am still deeply invested in and serve and where I hope to keep helping young people feel a sense of community.
The importance of community
When people have a steady environment and people who look out for them, they thrive. Community is the place you can find support and overcome challenges. Community isn’t aren’t just a location, it’s a space filled with stories, aspirations, and different perspectives. Knowing this, it’s important we look around our communities to find out how we can actively engage those we love all around us.
Giving back comes in all forms
Serving community comes in all different forms. It’s not confined to monetary donations or big moves. It’s about the willingness to contribute in ways that align with our circumstances and abilities. It’s something anyone can embrace.
If you’re looking to give back to your community, I encourage you to find a way that works for you.
- Time and commitment
Volunteering your time is a great way to get involved and it doesn’t always have to take a ton of time. We have volunteers at Future Foundation who volunteer just a few hours a week or a month. Any amount of time is helpful and benefits those you come in contact with. It’s also good for your own well-being, too.
My favorite part about dedicating time to Future Foundation is walking away knowing I’m making a difference; no matter how small.
- Skills or expertise
Everyone has a specific skill they’re good at that can transfer into the volunteer world in many ways. My time in the NBA gave me access to amazing coaches and mentors which has helped me develop the skills to mentor and coach others. Your expertise could be useful in helping your community.
- Get creative
If you don’t have the means to give financially or by volunteering your time, there are still ways you can support causes important to you. With technology and social media taking the front seat, a simple share or text message can make a difference in bringing awareness to community projects.
You may not be able to dedicate time but maybe someone in your network can. By speaking up about matters important to you, you’re making a profound impact in your community and also letting people know which causes are important to you.
How your support benefits everyone
On top of lifting those around you, you get a direct impact, too. By surrounding yourself with people who share your values, you’re expanding your own personal network.
Community isn’t something you automatically have– it’s something you need to create and cultivate through building relationships. What better way to find a group of individuals who are motivated by the same causes you are? There’s no better place to start. Maybe your dedication will open doors to new opportunities or friendships that could be life-changing.
That’s certainly been the case for me–I’ve come to know so many incredible people through this organization and I know my wife and sister feel the same way.
Everyone holds the power to spark change in their community and it’s every act of kindness that can collectively make a difference. It’s up to us to inspire others to join the movement. Are you ready to take on the challenge?
If you’re interested in learning more about Future Foundation, you can do so here.