By: Blanca Burciaga, Senior
I want to begin by saying that it was a privilege to participate in a fast that has so much meaning into it.
While I was fasting I had many thoughts, and I also had many concerns. I felt that since I was fasting I had to create awareness about many things that surround our community, but I had no idea how to do that. Then, I realized that I was making a difference just by fasting and showing people in my school and in my community that I did care and that I wasn’t an ignorant teenager like many tend to say.
Throughout the day I also felt very exhausted. I was in a bad mood most of the day – I guess because I had no sugar in my system. The hardest part of the day was when the clock hit 5 pm. Since I am used to having a meal at that time, I was feeling very irritated because I couldn’t even chew gum.
The best part of the day was realizing how important it is for me to be a part of this fast; I feel very proud and lucky to have made a small difference today.
“I pledge to raise awareness about sexual assault and rape and to give voice to the victims of these crimes” was the pledge that I reflected on throughout my fast. Many thoughts came to my mind, but one of the main thoughts was: how can I raise awareness about this problem in our society? I also thought a lot about giving voice to the victims of this crime. I thought about the fear that comes into the victims of rape. I asked myself numerous times about why was it that rape happens? What causes it?
There were so many questions in my head, but I just couldn’t figure out the answer to them. I hope RAW and BAM together can come up with ideas to give the victims of rape and sexual assault a voice. Most of all, I hope that we can come together to give support to these people.
By participating in this fast, I demonstrated that I am not an ignorant teenager and that I am willing to sacrifice anything to create awareness about peace-building. I believe that every faster who participates in this fast is showing that they care about all the life’s lost due to violence.
By completing 24 hour fast, I showed my commitment to my community, my people, and my family. By fasting I showed that Oakland is not all guns and violence; Oakland is a place that is also filled with wonderful people who care about their community and are willing to make a change little by little.
I know and I hope that the Season of Peace-Building, which the Life Academy community is facilitating, makes a difference in people. I hope that more people join us and show that they care as much as we do. I believe that events like this one are what make things change, because change starts with the people in our own community.
Edited By: Eva Oliver, RAW C0-Coach