In the shadow of our nation's capital, high school students face more than just the challenges of schoolwork. They have to deal with inner-city gangs, drug dealers, drive-by shootings, a lack of role models, and little parental support. It can be a struggle just to stay alive -- which is why many D.C. teenagers never graduate. The Fly By Light program seeks to break this cycle with a series of after-school workshops culminating in an 8-day nature retreat. For many of them, it is their first time leaving the city, hiking in the woods, cooling off in a creek, uncovering difficult emotions, or expressing their feelings through art. Let this music video from the program wash over you like a cool stream, move you with raw emotion, energize you with the beat of drums. It is the sound of transformation, self-acceptance, friendship, and hope for a brighter future.

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  • Watch an abbreviated version of the documentary, "Fly By Light," which follows four teenagers as they go through the program -- and then return to the challenges of everyday life. 
  • Volunteer your time and talent to help disadvantaged youth. Call your local Boys and Girls Club or YMCA to ask about opportunities, or try VolunteerMatch or Idealist.org.
  • Have compassion for all kids today. Remember what it was like to be a child, at the mercy of others for basic needs. Show them the world is a caring place.

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