Week Nine – Ahmed أحمد – Detroit Community-Engaged Research Program

Week Nine – Ahmed أحمد

Assalamu Alaikum (peace be unto you) everyone

As I revisit my first-ever blog post penned at the outset of this incredible journey, I’m struck by the depth of transformation and growth that these weeks have ushered into my life. The Ahmed who sat down to write those words has evolved profoundly, and the insights gained along this path have been nothing short of enlightening.

My initial intentions and aspirations remain a steadfast compass guiding me, yet the prism through which I view them has shifted and expanded. At the start of DCERP, my focus was primarily on learning about the justice system, understanding its impact on daily existence, and leaving a positive mark on the Southwest Detroit Community Justice Center. While these objectives have not wavered, the dimensions of my understanding have deepened significantly.

The concept of community, once a simple notion of collective interest and support, has blossomed into a multifaceted realization. I’ve come to comprehend that true community isn’t merely about shared goals but also about embracing diversity, fostering inclusivity, and amplifying unheard voices. In my interactions with the individuals I assist and the dedicated souls I work with, I’ve unearthed the power of genuine, empathetic communication. The ability to connect on a human level, listen without judgment, and foster an environment where stories flow freely is the essence of learning, growth, and transformation.

The dichotomy between expectations and reality has been a source of revelation and humility. The intricacies of the justice system, the lives it touches, and the rehabilitation mechanisms are infinitely more complex than I initially grasped. But this realization has fueled an insatiable thirst for knowledge and driven me to dive headfirst into the nuances, unafraid of confronting the uncomfortable truths that underscore our legal framework.

Moreover, my interaction with the Southwest Detroit Community Justice Center has affirmed the profound impact of its work. Witnessing firsthand the metamorphosis of individuals seeking a chance at redemption, a shot at rebuilding their lives – this experience has etched a deep well of empathy within me. It has fortified my commitment to a future where I can serve as a guiding light for those navigating the labyrinthine corridors of justice.

At this juncture, I am not merely Ahmed Shareef, a student with aspirations. I am a vessel of metamorphosis, an embodiment of growth. The journey is far from over; it’s an ongoing symphony of self-discovery, enlightenment, and service. The Arabic proverb that once graced my first post, “A pebble can support a barrel,” now resonates even more profoundly. Every small effort, every pebble of dedication, contributes to the monumental task of reshaping lives and systems.

Walaikum Assalam (and upon you be peace),

Ahmed Shareef

1 thought on “Week Nine – Ahmed أحمد”

  1. Ahmed, this is such a beautiful reflection on your time in DCERP this summer. I am so glad to hear that you grew past your expectations and are taking so much with you from your time at SDCJC! It will be so interesting and exciting to explore and study more about the justice and law systems with these experiences and to see how they all connect together in the fight for equity. Proud to be a pebble!

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