This statement has been attributed to many
sources, including Gandhi, Churchill, and Truman.
It calls to my mind the imperative that we must do our best for our children, among the most vulnerable in our society. Sustainable health and well-being is about doing this - living today in ways that will insure the health and well-being of our children and grandchildren and beyond.
Two stories have recently popped up that bring
the sustainability principle into sharp relief for me.
First, this afternoon, I watched moms - and children - protesting in front of the
Latino Family Center on Murray Avenue. The posters they carried stated - "We
need your support." Why? PA Governor Tom Corbett's budget involves cutting
the line that funds community-based family centers across the state. I am proud
that the parents of the Latino Family Center are teaching their children to speak
up - the children were the ones who told me what was going on and what they
were seeking. In addition to the Latino Family Center, there are many, many
more in the Pittsburgh area - the Prospect Park Family Center in Whitehall that provides services to refugee families, the Hilltop Care Connection in Mount Oliver,
the Lincoln Park Family Center that includes a Fatherhood Program. The PA family centers work together with families to prevent child abuse, increase positive parenting, and promote healthy parent-child development. Research shows
that the work of the family centers decreases abuse and improves overall family health and well-being. In my mind, the family centers promote a healthy future
for these individuals and families, and for the larger communities in which they
If you believe in the importance of family center programs for our children and families, please call Governor Corbett's office at 1-717-787-2500 or email him to
tell him so. Four times I have tried to embed a link to the governor's web-site
here, but it makes my computer freeze - go figure. Here is the link from which you can send email:
Second, I learned about a lawsuit that has been filed in the United States District Court in San Francisco against the federal government, charging that the government has failed to protect the earth for generations unborn. Several similar suits are set
to be filed in other states - most of the plaintiffs are teenagers. The suit has arisen from the work of Kids vs Global Warming, which has developed a project called iMatter. The iMatter mission is below:
Since we will inherit this world, iMatter was created to reach across regional, ideological, and ethnic borders, to empower youth to organize, and be heard on the issue of global climate change. We are
not only the generation who will suffer most from its consequences. We are also the generation who
will bring about the change needed to create a sustainable and just society that values nature and
future generations as much as short term interests.
Our Children's Trust is one organization, in addition to many, many others, that supports iMatter. iMatter is sponsoring a March on Mother's Day - the Million Kids March with the goal of one million kids standing up for their planet - from
Ohio to California to Florida to Bangladesh to Norway to Nepal. Check here to
see if there is a March near you.
I am so very grateful for the energy and brilliance of the young people who are
doing this work, and for the wisdom and courage of the adults who support them.