I attended a community meeting today, and it reminded me of something my older brother once said. At the community meeting, the speaker noted the importance of putting funding into programs that help prevent youth from getting in trouble instead of putting funding into the punishment of youth, for example Juvenile Hall.
How does this relate to what my brother said? My older brother would say, “My life would probably be different it I was in a Pee Wee League or Pop Warner Football. It’s just too bad I never knew about these programs until it was too late. And even if I knew, our family would not have been able to pay for it.”
It helped me realize that all these programs exist, yet youth cannot be involved in these programs because they or their family cannot afford to be involved in these programs. Because youth cannot afford to be in these programs, they turn to alternative things to pass their time, sometimes good and sometimes bad.
For my brother, it was bad. The bad meant spending time with friends and getting involved with drugs and gangs instead of playing football, due to our family lacking the resources for my brother to play and participate. To this very day, my brother still wonders how different his life would be if our family did not lack the resources for him to play football or be involved in other programs.