I was looking for somewhere where I could be around creativity and you know the excitement of youth telling their stories and I found 826 Chicago online, and it’s one of the best things that ever happened to me. Organizations like 826 add to the ecosystem of of Chicago’s arts and why this is such an amazing city for the arts for everyone. Volunteering with 826 has definitely changed how I interact with young people. There’s this idea that the arts are for those who have the means or like it’s a luxury or like a privilege to participate in the arts and I think if anything the arts can be a tool for survival. I became a teacher almost exclusively because of 826. They have so many important things to say whether it’s a poem about a dragon or an essay about you know, what it’s like when your school closes down. If you’re not paying attention to those, you’re missing probably the most interesting and important angle you could view the city from.