Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Passion to Action

Passion. This is a term that is frequently thrown around in daily life. We are encouraged to “Be passionate!” and “find our passions,” but what exactly does that look like?

            Even within the short time I have been involved with Change is Simple, it is obvious that for Lauren and Patrick, Change is Simple is their passion. From their daily energy and enthusiasm, to their personal dedication, the Belmontes are a true example of a couple that has found their passions, and are actively pursuing them. Change is Simple, Inc. is not just a hobby or occupation to them; it is the realization of years of work and thought dedicated to making their dreams and aspirations a reality.

Patrick Belmonte with a class
The first indication I had of their genuine passion for Change is Simple was the joy Patrick and Lauren bring to it. At my very first program with Change is Simple Patrick turned to us and said, “I can’t believe this is work. I would love to do this every day for the rest of my life.” His energy and liveliness with the class moments later was proof enough that what he said was true. Again, a few weeks later at a program in Beverly one third grader asked him what his favorite part of Change is Simple was. Without hesitation Patrick responded, “Being here with you guys.” From proudly displaying the classes’ thank you notes in the office (written on homemade recycled paper), to intentionally encouraging disabled and special needs students, the Belmontes’ enthusiasm is evident in many little ways.

Gov. Patrick and Lauren Belmonte
            Not only is their work with Change is Simple something they enjoy, it is what the Belmontes have dedicated much time and effort towards. Some of the Change is Simple staff joke that Patrick and Lauren don’t know how to have fun. “Their idea of hanging out for an evening is working on a grant together.” While Patrick and Lauren admit that grant writing is not how they would prefer to spend their evenings together, they are not afraid to sacrifice some of their time and effort now for their future goals. 
           They believe in Change is Simple, and their dedication has lead to measurable results. In the last few years, Change is Simple's programs have reached approximately 5,000 students in various Boston and North Shore elementary schools. Due to the recent grant from the Cummings Center, all elementary schools in Salem and Beverly will receive Change is Simple's programs for the next two years. Even with these great accomplishments, the Belmontes recognize Change is Simple has the potential for much more, and are willing to invest and do as much as they can now. 

Although I just became involved with Change is Simple in the past few months, watching Patrick and Lauren’s passion has made it easy to work alongside them and become passionate about Change is Simple as well. Beware: genuine passion is contagious.

Catch the passion: see what we are up to on our website changeissimple.org or like us on our facebook page!


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