Giving Back at GWUOHS

Lauren Bautista, Divya Srinivasan, and Mateos Anteneh

Lauren’s Thoughts on the Importance of Volunteering:

Volunteering is part of being a responsible citizen; when you volunteer, you can change the world for the better! While volunteering does not offer pay, it offers many other benefits. For instance, you can help movements you value, such as racial justice or climate change advocacy. Furthermore, volunteering saves resources such as money, and those resources can be used for other things. Volunteering also brings people together and strengthens your community. Not only does volunteering improve the community, it also benefits yourself!  In volunteering, you can learn new skills, get a chance to give back, and make a difference. Why not volunteer?

Divya’s Rendering of GWUOHS’ Service Towards Others:

As we mirthfully enter the holiday season, GWUOHS has been active in generously giving back to our community. Earlier in November, the Student Council collaborated with the Capital Area Food Bank to host the annual food drive. This food bank passes on collected money to meal centers, day care programs, and several other similar non-profit organizations to significantly support those in need. As an effective motivation for students and families to pitch in, the Student Council creatively arranged a competition between grade levels; the grade which donated the most was announced as the winner. In addition, the school has been facilitating a campaign entitled “Operation Christmas Child” in which students could build a shoebox of gifts and essentials–either online or physical–which would be sent to children in need, to delight them during this festive season.

How Mateos’ Family Gives Back:

In my family, a special importance is placed on the act of giving. And growing up in a household with 3 other siblings, giving and sharing,  is something that I learned pretty early on. One of my earliest memories is bringing free food to a carpenter who was fixing one of our beds. Donating food has since become a passion for my family. During the season of giving, my siblings and I like to put a special emphasis on sharing food with others: last year, we donated food to the Children’s National Hospital in DC, to show our appreciation for them and all the hard work they do. This year, we donated to a police department in Plymouth, Massachusetts, to commemorate the first Thanksgiving. We’ve made dozens of other donations throughout each year to give back to our global community; not because it’s easy for us, but because of the change it inspires in the world. I’ve seen firsthand the power that simply donating a box of pizza can have. It’s brought people to tears, knowing that someone cares for them. It’s uplifted people in tough times, giving them hope to press on in the face of their struggles. And it’s also let frontline workers, like the nurses at Children’s National Hospital, know that their work is seen and appreciated. That’s why my siblings and I continue to make our donations through our organization Unity Pizza, so we can continue to touch hearts around the world and inspire others to do the same. It’s my dream that these donations can help people realize how they can change the world in their own way.

We Invite you to Share Your Volunteering Experiences:

Gratitude is more than uttering a simple thank you; it channels received kindness towards inspiration and passes the kindness on to others. GWUOHS has been energetically helping others, together as a school, and as individual families. Take a moment to reflect upon what you can personally do to give back to your community. Or, perhaps, have you already been active in the domain of volunteering? If so, share your service endeavors in this padlet and be certain to check out other posts for inspiration, as well.

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