This week, we woke up to the horrible reality that 19 children in Uvalde, Texas won’t have a chance to grow into healthy, happy adults. Ten days prior, 10 parents, grandparents, and siblings were killed by an 18-year-old in a racially motivated shooting in Buffalo, New York.

As I think about these tragic losses, my faith in the power of community to come together, to heal, to connect, and to help is unwavering. Keeping a focus on children is essential. If children are safe and happy, so are our families and so is our community.

As we lead with values and compassion and our wealth of local resources, how can we come together in the face of violence, a mental health crisis, systemic racism, persistent poverty, and more? How can we give all our kids a fair shot at life and our families pathways to opportunity? In this moment, as in many others, we ask ourselves: what will it take?

WBUR’s Radio Boston asked me to speak about leadership and serving our communities this week, a day after the shooting. I outlined what philanthropy can do disrupt the harmful status quo and the power of community to act.

Just before I got on the air, Rev. Mariama White-Hammond, founding pastor of the New Roots African Methodist Episcopal Church in Dorchester, challenged us to consider what it would take to be a “pro-child country”.

Let’s come together, Cambridge, and make our city a pro-child community. We all have a role to play.

In solidarity,
Geeta Pradhan