A growing group of young Rhode Islanders is stepping up to volunteer in their world of low budgets and high drop out rates.
The Indigo Dream is the focus of this week’s Street Story and it’s the inspiration of Brett Kunzmann who started the non-profit organization in January in West Warwick and Coventry.
‘To make something better,” 17 year old West Warwick junior Mathew Couchon tells us. “You have to work for it.”
Kunzmann says the goal is to get people to focus on how to fix issues in their communities instead of just complaining about the problems. Right now, there are 20 indigo dreamers, working in a rabies clinic one weekend and cleaning up trash in a park, the next.
“I remember thinking it was a dirty park and I’m one of the reasons it’s dirty,” Couchon says. “Why shouldn’t I clean it up?”
The volunteers come from all sorts of backgrounds but Kunzmann and Couchon are good examples that it can matter more where you’re going than where you were.
“I’ve been in and out of trouble,” Kunzmann tells us. “But not anymore.”
Couchon admits he thought he knew everything until his ‘inspiration’ was literally born when he was in 9th grade.
“I wasn’t ready to grow up but you have to do what you have to do,” he says. “And now that I have a child, I want to make the community better for him.”
After existing for a mere four months, The Indigo Dream was recognized in a ceremony at the State House. But the volunteers say their goal is more important than awards.
“You can believe in yourself instead of a rapper or a hip hop artist,” Kunzmann says. “Look in the mirror. That’s someone you should believe in.”
The next dream is a community garden but the indigo dreamers say the sky is the limit when it comes to how much their organization can help their community.