Graduates, with certificates in your hand you have just taken your seats. Thank you for the touching words you shared.
Today, a new future is being created which is very much needed. President-elect Barack Obama has a “We Can!” campaign. We at The Empowerment Center have always had the “We Can!” attitude and you NYWRAC 23rd Graduation Class have demonstrated this attitude, “We Can!”
President-elect Barack Obama is asking each one of us for our input into the nationalized healthcare plan. Something each one of us has gain expertise on, as such, we can create something new, something better and something that works! Because of where we have come from, we have a responsibility – to make the future better because “We can!”
The Empowerment Center asks each of you to continue our purpose, as difficult as it may be, by maintaining a vision.
How do you do this? Through quietly listening to yourself, and then hard work to find the best ways to respond.
How do we do this? Through learning from others around us, active listening to those around us who are in need and then doing whatever is necessary.
Now really, how do we do this? By knowing “We can!”
The future is now. The tasks ahead of us are great. It can be overwhelming thinking about what we personally need to do, taking the steps, making your personal future better, working together to overcome the obstacles routinely stumbling us, envisioning what can be and then succeeding in its creation. I know this as this is my struggle and it is yours, if you choose.
Continue learning. Learn about the greater challenges facing us, those who can be vulnerable.
On December 6th the Boston Globe reported that Dr. Joseph Biederman, the Boston psychiatrist, is currently under investigation for courting Janssen Pharmaceuticals for experimental treatment of children using risperidone which we have learned causes major long-term damage in adults.
On December 4th BBC focused on the findings from the recent Journal of Advanced Nursing that patients in their thirties are most likely to receive coerced medication especially in the absence of other restraints. Their studies recognized the serious ethical flaw of forced procedures. Groundbreaking!
Think of better ways to get the help you need. Think better ways of unifying together, so we can help each other.
As NYWRAC graduates and advocates, you can be and are in leadership roles. Remember, The Empowerment Center’s purpose, take the best of what you have learned and live by the values of respect and integrity.
Be active, participate. Ask, how do I do it? How can I be part of it?
Know you can do it, because we are.
NYWRAC 23rd Graduation
December 11, 2008