Letter: Make a difference in your community | VailDaily.com

Letter: Make a difference in your community

Whenever someone asked me what I thought a leader might look like, I often pictured someone with higher education, holding a position of power or some type of important role within a company. To me, those individuals were the key holders to make any change possible. 

Oh boy, was I wrong! I learned long ago that each one of us is a leader in our own way. At home, school, work, and in the community. For me, being a Latino community member in Eagle County, I see the need for services in our native language that are not as easily accessible. Having had to access some services and not being sure where to go or what is available made me realize how someone who doesn’t speak English might feel.

It made me realize that I needed to make a difference in our Latino community, even if it was just a small contribution. In 2018, I decided that I might try to make a difference in my community and I joined the Family Leadership Training Institute class of 2019. The FLTI is a class for adults that focus on providing individuals with the tools and civic skills needed to make a difference in our community. The class not only provided me with the tools necessary to become an engaged community member but it also provided me with the opportunity to work with other community members seeking to make a difference and create opportunities for others.

The class presenters provided me the assistance, guidance, and connected me with community organizations and resources that I needed to be able to develop and implement my community project. I was able to partner with Mountain Youth, who embraced the project and saw its implementation in November 2019 with great success. My project started as an idea, it changed many times throughout the course of the class, and it finally took shape. It was embraced by the community and it made me realize that when a community takes action, it all falls into shape.

If you want to make a difference in your community and need assistance, join the Family Leadership Training Institute program. It is a free, 20-week course that begins with a retreat on Jan. 4 and then meets most Monday evenings from Jan. 6 through June 1. FLTI discusses things like community problem solving, leadership styles, public speaking, building networks, how to work with the media, how government works and so much more. Applications are available at http://www.fltiofcolorado.colostate.edu or contact Glenda Wentworth at glenda.wentworth@eaglecounty.us or call (970) 328-8362.  

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Guadalupe Ontiveros


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