(2) Seemingly Small Efforts can Change Another Person’s World

Among many lessons at Brandeis, one of the most essential was learning that a person’s passion toward a cause can make an immense difference. Before going to Brandeis, I used to think that an individual’s effort is not that crucial in a world where there are so many influential people with lots of power, wealth and privileges. However, I have met lots of people at Brandeis from different walks of life and witnessed their motivation and consequential success, and I can see that highly motivated individuals are able to make a future for themselves and also to help others. 

This has made me believe that I can achieve my goals of helping others as long as I believe in myself and put in the effort. I had already volunteered and served my community in my high school years, but with this motivation, I was able to pursue managing roles  where I could organize projects. I became a Lead Rescuer in the organization Rescuing Leftover Cuisine and was able to serve the homeless community in New York City. I realized how my volunteer work can put a smile on people’s faces. I also realized that small acts of service can make a huge impact. 

This is 13-year-old Vuk, who has cerebral palsy.  People’s donations through Pokreni Zivot were able to provide him with a neurological wheelchair!

I decided that working for a humanitarian organization like Pokreni Zivot—which fights healthcare injustices and poverty—would be a perfect way to make an impact.  My approach to my internship was with confidence and passion toward expanding humanitarian aid and reaching out to more possible partnerships in the hopes of them sponsoring humanitarian projects. One of the ways I utilized this skill was by directly reaching out to major chain store CEOs through LinkedIn. I did this in order to create partnerships with their company, which would result in donation boxes placements, sponsored humanitarian project activities, and many other beneficial humanitarian causes that could raise more funds for the poverty ridden communities.

Fortunately, most of the people that I reached out to responded positively and were interested in collaborating with our foundation. It turns out that some companies did not have humanitarian organizations directly reach out to them and weren’t aware of the ways that they could contribute. They indicated interest in collaborating with our causes and finding ways to organize fundraising.

If I didn’t have this confidence and strive, I would have never reached out to company executives, as I would have believed that they would never respond to me. The companies would also not have collaborated with a humanitarian organization, as they would not be aware of ways that they can help. Through this, I learned that one person’s effort can go a long way and create connections, partnerships and new ideas. 

I believe that seeing Brandeis students utilize their resources such as LinkedIn and alumni connections has motivated me to do the same. My thoughts have been shaped to believe that I can use my available resources to establish partnerships and lead to greater impact on impoverished families.