Dear Journey Group,

We are halfway through the PFO year and I wanted to share about the journey so far, what I’ve learned, and how PFO has impacted me. This year I served on the Photography Committee. Over the course of a few months, we took pictures that represent different non-profits that we got to work with. The non-profit that I took pictures for was called Great Outdoors University. The mission of Great Outdoors University is to bring life-changing experiences to kids, who have limited opportunity to explore the natural world. I really enjoyed taking pictures outside for this non-profit. All of our photos for the non-profits will be in a book, along with the slam poetry pieces. This year, I have also had 5 buddy events with my buddy, Yasmin. I am amazed every time I see her because of how much she has grown. At the first buddy event in August, she was very reserved and shy, but at the last buddy event, yesterday, she was very interactive with other people and she even participated in a dance party that we had. She continues to surprise me in a good way every time I see her. I am so glad I have been able to create a friendship with her throughout this year.

After each committee meeting every Saturday, we have Lifetalks. Lifetalks are given by Small Group Leaders and they are just as they sound, a talk about life, goals, etc. One of my favorite Lifetalks this year was the one on making assumptions. We watched this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zNbF006Y5x4 (The video is only 45 seconds, and it’s really cool! You should watch it!) In the video I assumed everything was life-sized, however, I soon realized it was not. In the Lifetalk, we talked about how you should never assume things about people either. I have begun to apply all the things I have learned in the Lifetalks to my life, and I really like the effect that it is having. I am also very excited for the upcoming season in PFO. In January, we start our Arts Experiences. I am in the Dance Experience this year, and I am really looking forward to the production, HeARTbeat, that we will put on in March! We will choreograph dance pieces that tell the stories of non-profits in the Charlotte area, in a unique way. Thank you for everything you do for me! I really appreciate all of you. Thanks for reading!

In gratitude,

Louisa Stein