Monday, December 17, 2007

The Celebrate Passion Project - Guest Blogger, Steve Harper

I have reached out to several other bloggers and asked them to share their passion. Interestingly so far only Steve Harper has taken the time to write a guest blog post. Others have told me they are too busy and one "A-List Blogger" told me that my "little blog" did not get enough traffic to warrant his effort to write for me, ... that by doing so would benefit me more than him (that spoke volumes about HIM! Oh well, you live and learn about people everyday). There are still 14 days left in December...I welcome your guest posts about what fires you up!

Thank you to Steve for the below Guest Blog Post, as by sharing his passion he impacts the world!

A Passion For Helping Kids
by Steve Harper

First I would like to thank you Thom for inviting me to be your guest Blogger and contributor to your Passion Project series. I think this is a great way to expose your readers to people who are really out there following their dreams and making it happen. I am honored you think so much of my work that you invited me to share my passion with your readers.

I am passionate about helping kids understand that nothing is out of reach if you believe in yourself and just try. I guess you could say that my passion was first discovered way back in high school when my marketing education teacher, a man by the name of Jay Stephenson, took me under his wing and showed me the world of possibilities by being an entrepreneur. Mr. Stephenson showed me that despite whatever negative thoughts I may have been feeling about myself at the time (and trust me in high school there were a lot), I could achieve anything I dreamed of if I had the courage to believe in myself, put in the hard work and go for it.

Mr. Stephenson helped me break out of my shell and discover that I had a good head on my shoulders and a creative mind when it came to business. He helped me express my ideas into foundational concepts and he helped plant, nurture and cultivate my entrepreneurial passion. His invaluable lessons to this day continue to drive and motivate almost everything I do.

In the years since high school I have been fortunate enough to work with kids in various arenas whether it be through Junior Achievement, The Alternative School Programs, National Junior Tennis League and of course another huge passion of mine…coaching soccer. I have seen kids who didn’t believe in themselves and thought they had nothing to show the world surprise themselves and those around them. I have been on the other side of the table, the place where Mr. Stephenson once sat across from me, and I have seen the ember s of change begin to warm, catch fire and eventually burn in the eyes of so many young people. I have to tell you that there is nothing more rewarding in the world than to know you have started a young person down a path to success simply by believing in them.

So if your readers could do just one thing in 2008 I would ask them to find an opportunity to make a difference in a young person’s life. There are so many kids out there that are growing up without believing in themselves and they just need someone to believe in them…so they can learn to believe in themselves. Amazing things can happen to our schools, to our communities, towns and to this country if we all just do our part to help a young person realize their true potential.

That’s my passion…hope it becomes a little of yours as well.

Ripple On!!!

Have A Great Day.


Liz said...

What a beautiful and inspiring post! Thanks Steve and Thom.

Aruni said...

Great post and so true. Helping kids (whether your own or others) is one of the best things we can do for the future of humanity. Kindess. I'd also like to add...remember the teachers. If you have little ones make sure you say thanks to their teachers and give them nice holiday gifts to show how much you appreciate the role they play in your children's lives.

Happy Holidays Steve and Thom!

PRahman said...

Thom, it’s wonderfully gracious of you to open up your forum in this way.

Steve, kudos to you for accepting Thom’s invitation and for sharing so authentically.

To all the folks out there who read this blog, and Steve’s blog, I must tell you that I have had the wonderful opportunity to witness, firsthand, Steve Harper in action with a group of children. In the summer of 2007 he willingly volunteered his time to be a guest presenter to a group of middle school students in a youth program I co-created/co-lead. It was a joy and an honor to have Steve’s participation. All present, adults included, were touched by Steve’s positive presence.

Tom Magness said...


I am not surprised that while others would not respond to your offer to "guest blog," Steve Harper would jump at the chance! He is a giver, a genuine guy who is making a difference. Thanks for connecting people with Steve. Thanks Steve for the difference you make with young people...and with those of us who are still feeling young!