My Community

What was the environment in which you were raised? Describe your family, home, neighborhood, or community, and explain how it has shaped you as a person.

As I plug in the radio and balance the camera on a few shoeboxes, I yell for everyone to get in their spot, then hit record. We dance around the room and jump on the bed shouting the lyrics of the new Hannah Montana CD. I don’t have a worry in the world. Every day was a new adventure for my neighbors and I. Maybe we would sneak around the creek behind my house, or maybe we would go door-to-door, trying to sell our old stuffed animals. No matter what, we were always able to turn a mediocre day into something special.

The neighborhood where I grew up broke the stereotype of an African-American community. My neighbors were well educated, middle-class citizens, who not only looked out for themselves but for the well being of the entire neighborhood. I learned from a very young age to support those around you, whether or not you are related, look the same, or have the same beliefs. My neighbors and I didn’t talk about our differences - we went on playing, building our relationships - we didn’t care. Soon enough we were well-versed in one another’s culture and began taking on characteristics and traits of one another. We were good enough for one another and never dared to ask the other person to change.

While my parents were...

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