Inclusivity and belonging have two different meanings. If life is like a table, inclusivity means you are allowed to sit at that table. Belonging, on the other hand, means there is already a seat at the table with your name on it. Instead of asking for permission to sit at the table, you belong with your actions.
Samuel belongs. He was born with cerebral palsy, and that has made it difficult for his body to develop, and in turn for him to be physically active. But he loves football. He is actively involved with the Manchester United Foundation, where he is surrounded by kids his age from diverse backgrounds. There he receives premier coaching and mentorship from those older than him, and he has the opportunity to play football regularly, his dream. His other dream was to visit Manchester United’s training ground to see the facilities, and hopefully meet some players from the team. Samuel got that, and more, describing his visit as the best day of his life.
Samuel used that experience to ignite his passion for playing football. More importantly, though, he used that experience to help him overcome life’s challenges, realizing that he can accomplish whatever it is he sets his mind to.
Sometimes, we need a dose of encouragement to help us remember that belonging means taking our place at the table, no matter what issues we may deal with on a daily basis.
NOTE: This feature shares a video created by the Manchester United Foundation.