When I was in seventh grade, my friend and I had begun work on planning a big service project. Originally, it was just the two of us, but it soon started to become something a fair bit bigger than we could have anticipated.
From the Giving Tree, we had received paper bags that we would fill with general school supplies, pencils, markers, erasers – essentials a child would need to start a school year. Along with the supplies, there would be an encouraging note inside for whoever would be receiving it. When my friend and I decided to do this, we thought it’d be a task that would take us all day, as we had 12 kits each with 6 bags in them that we would need to fill. We cleared our afternoons and got to work.
We were right: it was slow going at first, but we both kept going at it because we knew what we were doing was going to be important for a lot of people. Over time though, I think to both of our surprises, people from the neighborhood started coming to help us. Neighbors, kids, family, eventually things started speeding up and we were going to be able to get these out to people even sooner than we thought we would.
Sure enough, we ended up finishing the last bag hours ahead of schedule. We got all 72 bags fully packed and ready before dinner. While finishing up that early definitely felt nice, what felt even better was knowing that all these people were able to come together and help our contribution to all of those in need. It was amazing that all of these people from the neighborhood and my friend’s family were able to put aside whatever they were doing and chose to help people instead. It really helped show me just how little it can take to make a difference to someone and how easy it can be to help those who are in need.
I can only hope that in reading this, you feel inspired to do the same and rally those close to you to help make a difference in your community alongside you.