Dare to Care

Today is our national day of giving thanks for the abundance in our lives. 
Once again, teen volunteer Tessa Biggs boils things down to the things that really matter.

By Tessa Biggs

As a high school freshman, I exist within the social confines of peer-imposed apathy. If I dare to join a club, engage in a conversation with any depth, or voice a personal passion, I will be ridiculed and shunned. I am surrounded by high schoolers who are either unable or unwilling to reveal the things that matter to them, the things that bring both joy and dedication to their lives – it is, frankly, socially unacceptable to give a $h!*.

But, I am energetic. Scratch that – I am beyond energetic. I am passionate and exuberant and I love being fully engaged. I want to matter, to learn everything I possibly can and strive to make an impact on our world.  

At Square Peg, I can, and I do.  

Almost two years ago, I stumbled into Square Peg as an over-eager Pony Clubber looking to do some good in the world. I didn’t really know what I wanted, but I knew I wanted to be at this barn. Joell happily put me to work and I have loved every minute.

I don’t have to pretend here. It is impossible to be indifferent when the children you spend time with continuously inspire and impassion you. About a year ago, I made a choice. In both my school and my social life, I no longer wanted to pretend to not care. I figured out that time spent detached from my true-self left me empty and bleak. I could not continue this way; So I stopped.

I remember someone in my history class mentioning their work at a soup kitchen for community service credit. Many students found this important work worth making fun of. I laughed, then kindly told the class where to shove it. My volunteer work at Square Peg is one of the most enriching and valuable aspects of my life. I have found a safe place where people praise my individuality, not diminish it. I have found my people, my ‘tribe,’ for whom I will be forever grateful.  

The best part is, I decided to care and no one cared. People respected my choice and liked me just the same – if not more. So all I really want to say is – it’s okay to care – in fact, it’s everything.

The Kunze Family has offered up a challenge to raise funds for Square Peg. Every dollar you donate between now and the end of the year will be matched up to $10,000! Your support is a lifeline to our families and the horses who call Square Peg their sanctuary. We are so grateful for your support.

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