NEWS & VIEWS OF PHILLIPS SINCE 1976
Tuesday October 24th 2017

Keep citizen journalism alive!

Donatebutton_narrow

Archives

Activist self-care

Daisy Buenrostro, with the Cultural Wellness Center Engaged Citizen Award presented to her at the Backyard Initiative All CHATS meeting, February 21.

Daisy Buenrostro, with the Cultural Wellness Center Engaged Citizen Award presented to her at the Backyard Initiative All CHATS meeting, February 21.

By Khusaba Seka

When you think about how you started doing community work, what was the spark that started the flame? Maybe you don’t have a specific memory. You just always could relate to the “underdog”?  However, if I asked you, “Have you ever been close to burn out”, you can probably tell me exactly what extinguished the flame.
So many of the youth we engage in this work are on the right path but burn out before they meet their destination.   As I sit down with one young leader and discuss her future, this question comes to mind.  How do we encourage her to continue the work her community is calling her to do without her giving up her youth or “separating her from the crowd”.
Being 15, beautiful, and popular, you think someone of this description would not have others on their mind.  But, Daisy Buenrostro is not only beautiful and popular, she is smart, courageous and can’t remember a time she wasn’t considering the feelings of others.  Her name might sound familiar to you because she was just on the TV news for her bravery in helping to report a vehicle that was described in an Amber Alert. Because of her quick response, a kidnapped eight- month old baby was reunited to his mother.
[K. S.] I visited her and her family at their home. As we sat together and talked about the fate-filled day, I asked why she wanted to help.

[D.B.]  “I have always wanted to be on the news for a heroic act, but it never dawned on me that checking a license plate number would get me there.I  was just thinking of my baby sister, Kathy.  I was scared to go outside. I tried to look at the plates from the window of my home but the front plate was missing on the car so I had to go outside to read the rear one. I had just gotten home from school and had put my pajamas on to be comfortable. I poked my head out the door to see if it was safe. I could still hear the helicopters above and I went back inside quickly.  The numbers on the license plate matched the Amber alert. I told my dad to call 911”.
[K. S.]Now that you have gotten all this attention, how do you feel?

[D.B.] “I am glad my 15 minutes of fame cooled down. My dad should be recognized as much as me. However, I do feel rejuvenated. I had lost interest in being a part of some of the leadership development I was doing, then this happened.  It was a reminder that I am a youth that has been afforded a lot. We can change the world for better or for worse. We can spread the good and it will come back.”
[K.S.]How has this attention affected your family?

[D.B.]  “We received positive and negative attention. It was difficult that the kidnapper was another Latina. I don’t want people of my culture to be thought of as baby- stealers.

Daisy and family members with three officers from the 3rd Police Precinct at the Backyard Initiative’s All CHAT meeting present to recognize the valiant efforts of Daisy and her family. From left to right- backrow; Sgt. Carrol, Officer Turner, and Officer Hakanson. Front Row; Fifi, Daisy, and Kathy Buenrostro.

Daisy and family members with three officers from the 3rd Police Precinct at the Backyard Initiative’s All CHAT meeting present to recognize the valiant efforts of Daisy and her family. From left to right- backrow; Sgt. Carrol, Officer Turner, and Officer Hakanson. Front Row; Fifi, Daisy, and Kathy Buenrostro.

There were things written online about us that were hard to see. When I went outside to investigate, I didn’t know the kidnapper was a mom, too. It was sad to see her kids come out of the house after her. The positive is my friends have had fun with it. They say things like, “Make room for the hero!”  My sister, FiFi, is getting recognition in school, too. I’m glad people called and congratulated my dad. He deserved the congratulations just as much as I, but he doesn’t like a lot of attention”.

[K.S.]How do you think you can keep the momentum from this event going? [D.B.]  “Well, I want to volunteer. Bullying and racism are an interest of mine. There is not much diversity in my school so finding a cultural group to work with would be good. I don’t like seeing kids sitting alone in my lunchroom. I can relate to that. My mom is a good example; her being a BYI Anchor Family inspires me. She is involved in such a big thing.”
[K.S.] How can other youth be leaders?

[D.B.]“Look outside your windows. Look around you.  You have to want to do good.

As I sat with Daisy I shared with her the leadership work I did at her age. I talked about how to keep balance, stay a kid, and finding a cause worth representing. Our young leaders need mentoring that builds them up, fortifies, utilizes, and builds their skills and talents. So many people will want to “use” them. They can be swallowed up by a cause for which they fit the demographic, but will never have leadership because of the unwillingness to share power with those who are traditionally the ones receiving services. Or, they are “used” by an organization who is pursuing funding but not really doing the work of truly engaging youth or the people in the community. The pull of your community’s needs can be overwhelming. I don’t want Daisy or our other youth leaders  to burn out.  Instead, how can I lend guidance on her new path? As I reflect on what has kept me engaged for over 20 years, self- care comes to mind. I  thank the Buenrostro family for the work they do as an Backyard Initiative Anchor Family and the support they give each other in their every day life.

Share this with your friends:
  • email
  • Print
  • PDF
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Tumblr
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Google Bookmarks

Leave a Reply