Sunday, 11 November 2012

My World

On my previous blog, I explained a bit about who I am, what I've done so far and a bit about Pikangikum. Now I want to explain the problems that are happening around me every day.  Next time I will talk about the campaign I am starting and what we plan to do.

Over the past week I have been working on a poem regarding the troubles kids go through, kids from my middle school, here it is.

The Children We Were

I look at my classroom
to see what I can see
My classmates beside me,
working quietly
All grown up now,
making decisions on their own
Good or bad,
they do it alone
But what else can I see?
I see children
young, not yet old.
Laughing and playing,
doing what they were told.
But where did they go?
Innocence long gone,
no longer saying harmless things,
forgetting their childhood songs.

Boy on my bus,
talks about weed.
People turn their backs,
call him a druggie
But where is the child?
From years long ago?
Only 4 years old,
and not yet grown
But what did he lose,
all along the way?
Were his parents there,
saying kind things?
Or is he beginning,
the path that they're on?
Not really caring,
about what he has done?
Will no one ever break,
this cycle that goes ever on?

Girl from my school,
breaks all the rules.
Very confused,
wrote 4 20 on her shoes
Mother and father,
no longer care
about her struggle and deep despair.
Says things that
she doesn't really mean.
Can't find a way
out of this dream
that won't treat her kindly.
Problems with drugs,
one of the fallen.
Bringing others down with her,
that never had a problem.

But who will be the one,
to reach out their hand?
To bring them to,
the true promised land?
There are children,
in those around me
Still alive,
but slowly dying 
Never doubting,
always smiling.   

At my school there is more than one kid with problems with drugs. I find it very sad that kids are giving their whole life away for a short period of time of artificial happiness. Kids need their parents to help them get through these years. There are kids I know who have decided to turn to drugs. It's just terrible what is happening to otherwise perfectly happy children. Kids are only going to be doing this kind of stuff because they have a problem in their life. It's crazy to me to think that I go to a catholic school and we're having problems like this. It would be great if the school board could bring someone into the school to minister to these kids or show them a video and go through a bible study, just like what is happening for the youth of my church . At my youth group we will do these things, watch videos that show troubles that kids our age have gone through, looking into their life and learning from it. I think it would be awesome if these videos were shown in the schools. It's great to have a prayer service and similar school activities but these kids will need more than that. They need guidance. Kids need to stop ostracizing their peers and start treating them like decent human beings. If you don't have anyone who excepts you, then no wonder you start to smoke marijuana. People have to start acknowledging these kinds of problems and helping each other.  We, as the youth of this generation need to stand up and stop turning our backs on one another.


 - Follow me on Twitter!  @lvurneighbour

Sunday, 4 November 2012

About Me- Part One

Hi.My name is Josiah. I am a thirteen year old boy and I have something to say.

I was born in Ontario, Canada and the eldest of two other brothers. My whole life I've dreamed of making a change in the world and I want to share with you today my concerns and dreams for the future.
When I was about 8 I had a friend who I would visit at his camp. His friend was diagnosed with cancer and wasn't given a very long time to live by the doctors' prediction. His parents still did decide to give him chemo therapy (against the doctors opinion). Me and my brother (who is 1 year younger than me) thought it would be sad to see our friend loose someone close to him. So we decided to shave our heads bald for fund-raising for cancer. We received $200 which was a major accomplishment for us! We gave the money to Northern Cancer Research. If that boy's parents decided not to give him the treatment under the doctors' advice he would have died years ago.But he never did die. The cancer never left him but he still plays hockey and is a perfectly normal kid.That wasn't the only time I shaved my head for cancer though... When I was about 11 the earthquake in Haiti devastated the lives of millions of people living there. That summer me and my family went to a huge outdoor music festival. There my mom met a man named Eugene Cho. Eugene Cho is the founder of Ones Days Wages, a charitable organization. I wanted to do something for the people of Haiti, to start a fundraiser. My mom suggested contacting Mr.Cho to see if he would help me. He did and created a campaign on his website. If you would like to visit this page here is the link:    
I began fund-raising and collected around $1,100. The campaign is still ongoing.

On January 15, 2012 a close cousin of mine was diagnosed with cancer. She had a very aggressive form of leukemia. Everyone was devastated. She had to go to the Children's Hospital in London. She was 14 years old when diagnosed. After the reality of it sank in we all began to think of the future. Her mom would have to stay with her the whole time. With her older sister and father alternating between two cites they wouldn't be getting enough money coming through and her mom would have to come back home to work. That couldn't happen so me, my mom and my brother decided to do something (the same brother, the youngest was only a few years old). The two of us decided to shave our heads and collect money one more time. Our mother,the one who really got every thing going and did a huge portion of the work with her sisters (thanks mom and all you awesome aunties!!!) was awesome. Within five minutes of the campaign we raised $500. Over the months we raised thousands and thousands of dollars. The day when we would shave our heads was 26th of March, the birthday of Bronwyn (our sick cousin). Dozens of people decided to shave their heads or get a purple high lite in their hair. On that day Bronwyn made an appearance for her birthday back at home. During that Birthday Bash (as we call it) we raised over $15,000. It was completely phenomenal! Bronwyn went back to London and stared death in the eyes more than once. Over and over I had to prepare myself for the sad reality that could happen. During the worst of these my mom left to visit her and help/support their family. During that weekend I was terrified for a phone call from mom with bad news. But it never came. My mom came back home and Bronwyn was still alive (phewwww). Every day everyone would look for an update on Bronwyn. The chemo therapy nearly killed her and she had to get a VAD for her heart. She is still with us today and we do pray for a new heart. She's scared us a lot but through prayer, hard work and the meaning of family we got through it. She won't be home for another year or more but we are very hopeful (cant wait to see you Bronwyn!).  

Just recently my homeroom teacher was talking a bit about reserves. Throughout my lifetime I've visited many of these small communities. My dad is part of a band called Broken Walls. This band ministers to the First Nations Peoples of North America. I've gone on more than one trip with him so I know what they are like. So when my teacher talked about this I brought up the subject with my parents. We talked a bit about one of the reserves my dad has visited. It is called Pikangikum, which is in Ontario,Canada. Pikangikum has the highest suicide rate per capita in the world. My mom decided to Google this community and we found an article about it. The article talks about what it is like to live there. In Pikangikum almost every house is without running water Obviously they can get clean and wash themselves but when its -40 degrees Celsius its not so much fun to haul water. Pikangikum also deals with a lot of gas sniffers and alcoholics. Kids just wander around all night and sleep all day. The school in Pikangikum was burned down by a certain student and until further notice is held in trailers. The living conditions there are terrible and hardly anyone is doing any thing about it. That is why I've decided to spread awareness on this small community. The article touched my heart and I am determined to do something. Me, my mom and auntie are also trying to connect classrooms in Pikangikum with other classrooms around Canada. The link to that article is here:    

Thank you for reading this, I'll be posting more blogs soon on my thoughts on subjects important to me, future plans for Pikangikum and more about me.