Once, while at a retreat, I heard the best analogy about the significance of having communities. That is, the similarities between us and Redwood trees. Redwood trees have roots that are only a couple of feet deep. Yet, they require much more than that to stay standing. Similarly to us, Redwoods thrive off their surroundings. Redwood trees make up for the shallowness of their roots by extending their roots up to 100 feet and intertwining with the trees around them. Redwood trees need to connect with other Redwoods in order to balance and thrive.
Family. Friends. Churches. Clubs. These are just a few of the different communities that we, as human beings, encounter and participate in on a day-to-day basis. Personally, it’s hard to put into words what communities and support systems have helped me accomplish over the years. For instance, upon first entering college, my world was shaken. Everything was changing rapidly, and I felt like I had no control over it. Thankfully, God provided me with the communities I needed, in order to persevere. Those like my parents, who never received an education past the sixth grade, yet work hard for me to continue my education. Also, such as those that encourage me when I feel down as my professors do. All my communities have helped me navigate the new experiences and emotions college has presented me.
I recently read in my Sociology textbook that many immigrants who become successful in the workplace have done so due to countless support systems. For immigrants these types of communities can be hard to find and establish. Taller de José strives to not only advocate for immigrants and non-immigrants alike, but also to alleviate the process of finding and establishing communities. During my short time as an intern at Taller de José, I found myself submerged into the feeling of being in the presence of a community that desires the best for its clients in such a real way. The same community that Redwood trees need to stay standing.