Pakistani's 3 GYSD Projects
Exchange student from Pakistan whisking eggs while volunteering

Sahar reflects on year's culminating volunteerism events

Growing up, I have always been interested in giving back to my community and those in need. That said, I didn’t realize the importance of volunteering until I came to the U.S. Volunteering brings a sense of responsibility to me as a part of my community. I believe volunteering is one way to serve humanity, and that volunteering probably is the easiest way to work for the betterment of society. I have been actively involved in volunteer services in my host state doing over a 120 hours of volunteer services. I hardly ever got a chance to volunteer back home, or maybe I just didn’t realize its importance as much as I do now.

I participated in three youth service projects during Global Youth Service Day (GYSD). I, along with other PAX exchange students, helped clean up a farm by picking up trash. It was some days before Earth Day, and it brought me immense pleasure knowing that we are helping the Earth breathe by removing the trash that causes its soil to erode. It was a busy project, but together we did our part. We didn’t only bring smiles to the faces of the people who owned the farm by helping them but also preserved the serene view of the Earth.

Volunteering brings a sense of responsibility to me as a part of my community.

Additionally, I volunteered in my local community church where I go with my host family every Sunday. I helped in the church cafe by preparing breakfast to do a fundraiser for a mission trip. I love the people in the church and the mission trips they do to bring a change in the world. I am always in great awe seeing people in the church giving back to their communities and always ready to help. It’s through their enthusiasm of helping that I realized how Americans value their communities and give back to them. It inspires me to see them fundraise and go out of the country to make services to other communities for change and a better tomorrow.

I also volunteered for a blood drive in my high school. I helped sign up students and make posters prior to the event. On the day of the blood drive, I helped arrange the donated food for the donors and checked student donors in and out of class. Donating blood is an important act of kindness for humankind and everyone who needs it. As such, I was glad to be a part of this initiative.

This has been a wonderful time volunteering with my peers in recognition of GYSD. I am looking forward to helping my community back home and continuing to be part of volunteer services that benefit society and humankind.

—Sahar (YES, Pakistan), hosted by the Houts family (WI)