Are Young Orchid Growers the Key to the Future?
Are we at a time where the older generation is fading into the sunset and there are very few who will follow in their footsteps to lead the next generation? We are at a time where you see orchid society’s membership dwindling each year with very few newcomers. Wait, there is still hope as we have seen some youth just fall in love with the hobby over the past few years. Is this chance to mentor to someone that is new and has the passion and dire to want to learn more?
Many of us find a sense of purpose through the meaningful connections we build with each other. Often when we talk about mentorship, it’s easy to think about a one-sided relationship with age being the defining factor. This can feel especially true for mentoring relationships across generations, with the implication often being that only older adults can mentor young people, and not vice-versa. Relationships where one person is either only a recipient or only a provider often feel inherently unbalanced or transactional. True mentoring exists outside of age, when someone more knowledgeable about a topic helps a less experienced person grow in that space.
People of all ages thrive when we can make meaningful connections with others. When both people in a relationship have the opportunity to equally give and receive, and see inherent value in that exchange, the result feels positive for both sides. For these kinds of bi-directional relationships to thrive, core elements are vital for success – someone with a need, someone who can provide something of value that meets that need and a way for these groups or individuals to connect. In essence, we’re talking about a community of people – of all ages – eager to come together to share, learn from one another and grow together.
So is now the time we reach out to the younger generation so there is still a future in the orchid hobby?
David co-founder of www.waldor.com & Orchidnerd.com
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