Personal Power

Lao Tzu, famous Chinese philosopher living over 2500 years ago, stated that the biggest problem in the world is that individuals experience themselves as powerless. Powerless individuals feel helpless, negative, lethargic, frustrated, resentful, and often live in fear, enslaved by circumstances they perceive as beyond their control. The opposite of powerless is an inner awareness, an internal state of being we refer to as “personal power” in the emotional intelligence field. Quiet Confidence People with a highly developed sense of personal power have a quiet self-confidence that they can set the direction of their lives, and they do. They are able to distinguish among circumstances over whic

Ray in Guatemala: Journal Entry #5 - 1 Week After Ray’s Return to North Carolina...

It has been one week since my return from Guatemala and I must say, I MISS GUATEMALA! It became a home for me while I was there and my host mom reminded me of my own mother while there. Waking up each morning, to smell a freshly cooked breakfast was everything. Each morning our breakfast would consist of either: pancakes, eggs, cereal, omelets, and a lot of fruits. Each morning, breakfast was at 7:15 sharp. It would have been impossible for any of us to miss breakfast because our host mom, Mrs. Amanda, would come down the hallway to both boys and girls room saying, “desayuno es hecho, hora de despertar!” Which simply translates to: Breakfast is done, time to wake up. After breakfast we woul

Gregory B. Davis Foundation Hosts 10th Annual Motorcycle Ride for A Cause...

On August 20, 2016, Roanoke Rapids will be welcoming the 10th Annual Gregory B. Davis Foundation and Collier Harley Davidson Bike Ride for a Cause. For the past 10 years the Gregory B. Davis Foundation has partnered with Collier to attract over 100 riders to Ride for a Cause on a 100 plus mile route. Each year riders come from as far North as Baltimore and as far South as Charlotte and they do it all to make a difference in the lives of others. “This bike ride is a different type of environment where everyone meets on common ground despite differences whether ethnic, cultural, professional or occupational. Some people ride because it’s just a fun thing to do and some come because they want t

Ray in Guatemala: Journal Entry #4

Any where you travel, you're gonna experience some pretty wonderful things and you'll also experience issues in their society. A social justice issue that is very common in Guatemala is the power of a woman. The men in Guatemala are very dominant and will be in charge of situations. My teacher, Ms. Belgreat, warned us of this issue before leaving, but I didn't really believe here until my time here. If we walked as a group, people would approach me over her because I'm tall, I have a full grown beard, I'm a young man. Especially men would walk up to me and ask if I needed certain things, completely ignoring that she was standing next to me. Even while we're eating, the waiter would walk o

Shine On, You Crazy Diamond

“Your talent is God’s gift to you; what you do with it is your gift back to God.” –Leo Buscaglia The title of this post is something I wish I’d said to myself on countless occasions; and something I thought about after meeting an unassuming elderly man in a nursing home [note: I can’t take credit, “shine on, you crazy diamond” was discovered by the almighty ‘Google Machine,’ lol]. The man, a true diamond in the rough, filled me with immense gratitude for natural talents, and reminded me that it is not talent alone, but opportunity and nurturing relationships that determine whether or not talent gets a chance to shine in the world. Here’s what happened: I ran a health workshop for nursing hom

Ray in Guatemala: Journal Entry #3

Shopping in Guatemala can be a fun experience for anyone because it teaches a sense of value. In the states, I don't think we have a real meaning of value; even though, so many people believe they do. I brought myself a blanket from Guatemala for ______. The blanket, in my opinion, has a much greater than what they're selling it for. The women that make the blankets take months. Any where you go, you can witness a woman creating something amazing from something that I can walk down the street from my house in Garysburg (NC) to see, cotton. I wanted a blanket so bad because I can't go home look on the internet and find something like this. I didn't buy the blanket to just keep me warm, but

Ray in Guatemala - Journal Entry # 2

After taking some time to think about my time in Antigua, Guatemala I come to the realization that a lot of children and even adults are not grateful for the many blessing that we have in the US. I totally understand that we also have our issues that we have to work on, but looking at the problems that are taking place here in Antigua is a real eye opener. You can walk through the streets at any given time and see children selling different items to help provide for their families. Between the ages of 10-13, students stop attending school to work. Which blows my mind because they want to learn, but can't because they have other responsibilities and don't have the money to pay for school. C

Rayshawn Powell:  Journey to Guatemala Journal Entry # 1

Rayshawn "Ray" Powell, a Gregory B. Davis Foundation (GBDF) Youth Advisor and rising senior at KIPP Pride in Gaston, North Carolina, certainly does not allow any moss of any kind to grow under his feet. Not only is Ray a gifted student and athlete, but he is also currently President of KIPP's Spanish Club. From June 12-22, Ray along with six other KIPP students will be in Guatemala teaching students and spending time learning more about the culture and norms of youth and families living there. The KIPP students are to speak Spanish the majority of their time spent there. Ray wants to take you along on this wonderful journey highlighting some of his totally amazing experiences between now a

Chairman Jones: An Improbable Leader

Edna Davis-Brown, GBDF CEO/President, was extremely proud to be a part of this historical documentary, Chairman Jones tells the story of director Anna Jones’s father, James Henry Jones, who was born on a former slave plantation in 1916. A self-educated farmer, he emerged as a trailblazer during the 1969 school desegregation crisis in Northampton County, NC, leading the fight to end nearly a century of inequality in education for black children. Jones placed his own children on the front lines, bringing blacks and whites together for dialogue that allowed integration to tiptoe into his rural county and transform the educational landscape for all. His leadership as North Carolina’s first black

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