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“Go for it!”

Why should we “go for it?” Why should we make the transition from dream to memory? We should take action to define who we are.

Life is a series of memories. We cannot view our life with our eyes, or touch it with our hands, but we can solidify it through our memories.

When we take action we reinforce what is important to us, and create a memory. Our memories document our life and give us a unique perspective on our thoughts and experiences. For instance, when we engage in community service we help others while establishing memories of people, places and things.

Each one of us has personal interests. Pick something that you care about and do something about it. Every action we take changes the world a little bit, and also makes memories.

One way to make lasting memories is to pursue your passions. It does not matter what the passion is, as long as it has a positive influence. You may be committed to feeding the hungry, or playing a sport, or spending time with the elderly, or even helping youth prepare for disasters. Engage in whatever you enjoy, whatever you believe in, whatever is important to you.

Recognize that you can make a difference by participating in your passion. It is personally gratifying to invest in your passion, and rewarding to others. Make a memory by acting on your passions without delay. Our memories give us a unique perspective on our experiences. Memories become a record of our life.

If we don’t “go for it” and pursue our dreams, then our life becomes similar to acts of a computer. Like a computer we would be obeying commands of others rather than creating our own story. Although dreaming is important, the act of living our dreams defines who we are.

While all people are born equal, what each person does during his or her life portrays who they are as a unique individual. The relationships we nurture, the ideas we develop, the inventions we build, the dreams we fulfill, all exhibit what we care about. Each of our actions becomes a stroke of a paintbrush in the portrait of our life.

Nothing should hold us back from achieving our dreams. My Grandma always says, “God gave us what we have for a reason.” If we do not employ our abilities to achieve great things then we are being wasteful. So, why should we “go for it?” Because what we go for defines who we are.

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Konstantine Buhler believes that youth must lead the charge in disaster preparedness. In 2004, he founded Always Ready Kids (ARK), a youth-run organization that helps young people and their families prepare for disasters, and which provides aid for disaster relief. Over 15,000 young people have participated in projects that Konstantine has led for ARK from coast-to-coast in the U.S., and abroad. Additionally, ARK has raised $25,000 for disaster relief. ARK projects have positively impacted youth in four continents. Konstantine believes that just as youth successfully urge their parents to buckle up or recycle, young people can also lead their families to take appropriate measures to prepare for disasters.

Konstantine is widely recognized as a leading youth social entrepreneur. He serves as an Ambassador of Youth Venture, has led the Nestle Very Best In Youth Board as its president, was the youngest participant in the World Bank’s first Youth Open House, and represented Youth Service America at the Disney/Miley celebration of youth volunteerism. In 2010 he received the $25,000 National Axa Achievement Scholarship for his studies at Stanford University.

In 2007, Konstantine was named one of the nation’s top youth leaders and received the Nestle Very Best in Youth Award. In 2009, he received the Prudential Spirit of Community Award for his achievements in community service. Additionally, for four consecutive years Konstantine has earned the highest level of recognition from the President’s Volunteer Service. In 2008, he was the youngest person to lead youth in a summer project in Colorado sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and the government of Cyprus, called BOLD Leaders. In 2007, he became the youngest person in Illinois to complete the adult Community Emergency Response Teams training. He has received many other awards and recognition.

Konstantine is an activist for disaster preparedness and social entrepreneurship. As a featured speaker at summits and conferences, he shares his experiences with youth from throughout the world, and encourages them to take action.

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