By Luka Wohl, YES Abroad participant Hosted in Delhi
“On 1st Sept’18, accompanied by two exchange students and other friends, I was able to volunteer regarding raising money for the Kerala Relief Fund. Before commencing our volunteering, we were introduced to a girl from Kerala, whereupon she has been staying in Ghaziabad for the duration of a month while Kerala gets back on its feet. I was very curious so I asked about her family’s situation, and luckily she told me that her home was spared and that everything was fine, but unfortunately, that is not everyone’s case in Kerala. Therefore that is why we decided to volunteer for such cause, homes of families have been destroyed and they have no place to stay; most of the state needs to be rebuilt, or as said by many, “God’s own country needs our help”. So we did just that, we took the message to each house asking if they would donate their old newspapers, in which we would recycle, and in return get money to be placed in the Kerala Relief Fund.
With three hours of knocking on 14 floors of house doors, we ended up receiving approximately 500 kilograms of newspaper, which equivalents to ₹5000, all to be donated for Kerala relief efforts! I learned from this experience that doing a minor thoughtful thing, such as collecting newspapers, can end up impacting people’s lives positively. With this, I have told myself that I will start helping out more often, in bigger ways, and not just in times of crisis. If more people learn and adopt this approach around the world, everyone would benefit across the globe.”