Connecting With the Community
Exchange student from India volunteers at Feed Rogers in Arkansas

Hema's GYSD project

Being a global citizen is an exchange student's primary responsibility. I had the privilege of serving the community on Global Youth Service Day (GYSD).

First, I would like to share what volunteering means to me. We all know there are different love languages; one of these is acts of service. 

Service to the community is the perfect way, as a global citizen, to show respect and love. Volunteering is an act of service, love, and compassion we show to each other. Volunteering not only benefits the community but also enriches those who give their time and effort. It enables us to better understand each other as we look into the issues facing our communities.

This GYSD, I volunteered at two different places: Feed Rogers Community Store and a school plant sale. 

At Feed Rogers Store, I was part of a team dedicated to providing food to those in need. Even though people were facing many hardships, still they had smiles on their faces. I witnessed a sense of gratitude and relief. I realized there are people in society who face many problems but they never lose hope.

I realized there are people in society who face many problems but they never lose hope.

I also volunteered at a Seventh Day Adventist School plant sale. This was a fundraiser for school programs and raising awareness of saving the environment for future generations.

I assisted with organizing and selling a variety of plants such as cilantro and peppers. The participation of students and parents made me happy. It is important to spread the awareness of saving nature for future generations, as we all know Earth is facing global warming, pollution, and so many other issues. As global citizens, we need to spread awareness to save our Earth.

Both volunteering experiences taught me the significance of connections, empathy, and creating positive change. By giving back to the community through Feed Rogers and the school plant sale, I gained a deeper understanding of the diverse needs within the community.

—Hema (YES India), hosted by the Kohltfarber family (AR)