When applying for AmeriCorps positions, it can be a very personal decision based on a cause or issue that evokes a passionate response. Growing up, I didn’t realize that hunger was a big problem going on in the world around me. My first experience seeing hunger was on my first trip to India when I was 11. As reported by the FAO, 195.9 million people in India are undernourished; that’s 28x the population of Washington State. I knew after that trip that I wanted to help those who are in need of the most basic item in life: nourishment. We can’t build a strong future on empty stomachs.
Helping coordinate our Healthy HIP Pack Program has been a new experience, from working with our awesome group of volunteers to ordering bulk quantities of food to talking with kids about food insecurity in their neighborhood. What has struck me most and stayed constant in the different areas of my position was a deep sense of community.
Just in the couple of months that I have been at HIP, I can see the impact HIP has had on the community and the community it has created. Creating a sense of community is the most rewarding and positive thing we can do. From Earl’s hugs to Darcy’s infectious laugh, it’s that feeling of being a part of something unique and special. HIP has inspired so many people to help better the lives of many in the North Seattle area.
Moving to Seattle from Georgia was a big step for me. It has taken some getting used to not being able to drive 2 hours home to see family, but since my first day at HIP, everyone has made me feel warm and welcome like a family. I could see that HIP was a family in itself and I’m glad to be a part of it.
Til we pack again,