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Thanks for Answering

Things didn’t always go as planned when I was a kid. I bet you could say the same. Countless times, I lost my cool, got overwhelmed, wanted to give up. But every single time I knew I had someone to call. I never doubted my parents would be there for me. It was a fact.

When André’s phone started ringing off the hook, he answered it the same way my dad would have.

“Shawn, what’s wrong? Are you OK?

Shawn is one of three Street2Street kids who graduated our program and enrolled in college this fall. What’s more, he tried out for the basketball team and made it.

André has been taking each step with Shawn, shepherding him through this new and exciting, yet daunting, journey to success. So when Shawn called wanting to quit, you could imagine the shock in André’s voice.

Turns out it wasn’t even over something major.

“I was playing a pickup game with one of my new teammates,” Shawn explained, “and when he wanted to start a fight… I walked away.”

“You walked away?” The shock was still in André’s voice. “I’m so proud of you.”

“No, I’m so mad. I should’ve stood up for myself and not walked away. I don’t want to face him again. I’m quitting.”

Through the frustration and anger on the other end, André remained calm and positive.

“But Shawn, that’s not who you are anymore. What was your dream last year?”

…to go to college.

“What about six months ago?”

…to play ball at college.

“And look where you are now. You want to throw it all away over this? You did the right thing by walking away. I’m proud of you. Do you believe that?”

“Yeah, Coach, I do. Thanks for answering.”

Thanks for answering. What would the outcome have been if André hadn’t answered? He could’ve gone back to fight the kid. Or quit the team. Or given it all up and dropped out just to return to the streets that have already taken too much from him.

But he knew who to call.

At Street2Street we’re committed to answering the call—for Shawn, and hundreds of other kids like him.

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