Belonging. Unpacked

james shone

By James Shone

I am aware that I have never formally unpacked each of the four pillars of I Can & I Am and I would love to spend the next few weeks dwelling a little more deeply on each one.

Belonging is the first.  I have been thinking about it a great deal recently as with four children I can see it’s profound effect at work.  I always say in my presentations that to feel like we belong is a fundamental human need, and I think for young people today it is a primary importance.  When we belong, we feel safe and when we feel safe we are happy to be ourselves.  This is of crucial importance in helping people to be authentic and real to who they are. When people are real that is when they are more pastorally malleable and they can be shaped in to the person they are made to be more readily. I think all families, school communities, sports clubs, youth clubs… and the list goes on, should work hard to ensure that their subjects always feel they belong and they can be their individual selves. Individuality should be celebrated as should diversity. A homogenous environment lacks colour and authenticity.

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