I learned that a local Texas church just sent their youth group to Latin America so that they could "help" the poor locals by repairing the sidewalk of their church. However, I learned it was one of the village contractors that actually repaired the sidewalk, but that the teenagers were allowed to help with some of the tasks, like mixing the cement. I notice that the sidewalks in front of their own church, here in Texas, are not in good repair.
Here at our home, our children are replacing the rusted-iron fence around our swimming pool. I first had the job quoted by a couple of local contractors, both Latin Americans, and they each came in at more than $7,500. Instead of hiring one of them, I purchased a little MIG welder package for my teenage sons ($750), gas, tank, cart, and wire ($400), and new steel fencing ($700). We already own a grinder, but I did buy some more cutting and grinding wheels ($60). They are almost done, and I will soon need to buy the paint and thinner for them to finish the job ($70).
They have been spending many hours a day on this project. I have heard rumors of procrastination, argument, negotiation, foul language, mistakes, and threats. I have seen actual evidence of failure, determination, improvement, success, productivity, craftsmanship, pride, and increased self-esteem. The work I have inspected looks great, and the boys are now clearly enjoying the project. Yesterday, I was thanked for giving them the opportunity to learn how to weld.
Here are some do-it-yourself ideas for you, or someone you love, to develop self esteem.