I grew up watching sci-fi movies as a kid. Star Wars and Star Trek among others. They allowed me to imagine endless possibilities, the limitless of possibilities. Anything was possible, traveling to distant galaxies, befriending strange alien races, so there was no reason to why I couldn’t reach my own goals if such things might be possible. Though, I remember watching the original Planet of the Apes movie. One part always stuck in my head. The part where the captain says, “Why does man let his own neighbor’s children starve…”. Well, the captain was tired of humanity, it’s corruption. So he set out on the Icarus trip to space in order to seek better species. He found himself landing in an even worse future, caused by men like him who had given up on humanity and didn’t seek to help anyone. Well, if we want to avoid a future so bleak, we must do what we can to help each other. It is every person’s duty to help each other so we might better ourselves/humanity as a whole.
Recently, my friends and I have seen that we, even as high school, students can make a difference in others’ lives. So we set out to do what we could to make a difference. The first step was brainstorming. We faced a problem though, what could we do that was small enough to be possible for us but big enough to matter? So we scratched our heads. Volunteering at a pet shelter came to mind, but the thing was we wanted to help other people (not that we don’t like animals). We went through idea after idea with no end in sight. It was not only until I went to Albertsons and saw the Salvation Army store next door that the seed of the idea was planted in my mind. My friends and I would help the homeless, so we came up with a program to put together bags of supplies that were essential to everyday life. We dubbed our project, “Bags for Hope”.
So our first task was raising money. We raised funds in order to buy supplies by asking for donations to the project. By the time we had to buy the supplies, we actually had a substantial amount of money. We also found a church in which we could donate the supplies to. The church was holding a dinner for the homeless, so that became our planned date for giving out the supplies. So we had the money raised and knew where we were going to donate the supplies, we had to decide now what to put into the bags. We decided on adding only the essentials because we wanted to make the most bags we could for the project. We added toothbrushes, some clothing, food, among other supplies. It was quite a good amount of supplies for each person, if I might say so.
The last thing left to do was to donate the supplies. So we went to this church that shall remain anonymous on the internet. The thing we didn’t foresee was the amount of people attending. We had to simply dump out the supplies onto a table so that they would be evenly distributed. The people didn’t care though, they all thanked my friends and I all the same. The looks in their eyes were so genuine. From that point, I lost all my doubts about the project and knew all the time I had spent on it was worth it. The volunteers there asked my friends and I afterwards if we would like to volunteer there more often, an offer I would consider since I did not know my schedule yet. However, if i do find free time, I will definitely donate it. I hope to do this kind of thing again, perhaps on a larger scale, because there are always more people that need help.