BY: MONICA PEREZ
Sandra Cisneros once said “The older I get, the more I’m conscious of ways very small things can make a change in the world. Tiny little things, but the world is made up of tiny matters, isn’t it?” I think the world is also made up of tiny actions, the little things we do for one another are sometimes the actions that have the most impact. Privilege can be blinding and it gets way too easy to take things for granted, like having access to books to study from, having access to a computer and reliable internet, or even as simple as just having a pencil to use and paper to write on.
I’ve lost count of the amount of schools and orphanages we have visited in the 22 days we’ve been in Nepal, but the smiles and look of pure happiness of all the kids we encountered will forever have a place in my heart. I got to witness how a few packs of chalk could mean the world, how a story about believing in yourself and achieving your dreams served as a reminder that they can do anything and everything they set their hearts on, how something no matter how simple (erasers,pencils, pens, lollipops, gum, chocolate, markers,etc) could light up kids in a way that melts anybody’s heart. This trip was an opportunity to help create and maintain hope, we went to multiple towns, districts and cities: Gorkha, Pokhara, Lamjung , Banepa, Dhading, Patan and many many more, switching from doing need assessments to going to schools and orphanages and donating school supplies/money/sweaters/hats to taking dance lessons from all the kids, it feels like we saw so much of Nepal yet there is still so much more to experience that it is a must to come back.
I’m extremely thankful to the Asha project for choosing me to be one of the volunteers for this trip and I’m looking forward to working with them in any future endeavors. To anyone considering volunteering with the Asha project or Rotary international, just go for it, get out of your comfort zone, it is an extraordinary experience that you won’t regret.
Always remember: YOU CAN DO IT, anything you set your mind to, work hard and believe in yourself. So many unforgettable friendships and memories, I write this on my last day, seriously considering staying longer/already planning to come back.