I want to start my entry this week by thanking the Sisters United Muslim Association for their help and support for this semester. During the meeting tomorrow I will be collecting donations from them for the semester and I am truly grateful to have received such kindness from this group of students. Not only have they contributed donations to our charity but they accepted me into their organization with open arms and being involved with SUMA has introduced me to some incredible people.
I wanted to reflect on some of the things I’ve learned during this semester working to collect donations for School Supplies for Afghan Children. The semester started with awareness. I began the semester ignorant and unaware of the issues faced by children living in the war torn villages of Afghanistan. As an American college student attending one of the finest Universities in my country I did not ever stop to think how my life would be different if I had not been given these opportunities. By virtue of where I was born I was able to go to school. SMSgt. Rex Temple and his wife Liisa opened my eyes. They showed us what it was like to have all the desire in the world to learn but not to have even the paper to practice math problems on. They showed us how kids whose families were struggling just to feed them and survive were willing to give up a lamb, their livelihood, as an act of kindness to a strange American who gave them a gift (obviously SMSgt. Rex Temple did not accept the gift).
The semester began with awareness but it has ended in action. I’ve learned so much from reaching out to others to help collect donations and spread my knowledge. While it hasn’t always been easy to get others to listen, when they do the feeling of accomplishment and amazement I get from inspiring others is worth every moment of frustration. In some cases I’ve received very warm regards from many people including my friends, my family, and some of the organizations I’ve worked with. This semester I found SUMA, an organization willing to commit to helping me in addition to the other numerous projects I was doing. I saw my friends and family rally to support me and this charity. I saw tremendous support and commitment to the project from others even when they had other stressors in their life. I found people willing to commitment to helping strange children living on the other side of the globe despite it involving them taking time out of their own lives to do so. Overall, this has been a great journey and I am enthusiastic about continuing it as the semester comes to a close. If you are interested in learning more about School Supplies for Afghan Children, check out our Facebook page, Afghanistan My Last Tour.