|Packing my first box for the children in Afghanistan during class on Jan 24, 2011|
So many times I have been told, “You can do anything you want to do if you just try hard enough,” but now I see how untrue that might be. How ungrateful was I before I noticed the suffering of others who did not have a pencil to write with, or paper to write on, or a book to read just for fun! How ungrateful was I before I realized the blessings of something as small as having four pencils in my bag that I rarely even use. How ungrateful was I.
I did not expect to be in this position two months ago when I first registered for this class nor did I expect to attain such a passion for the cause when the descriptions for the classes were first being read aloud! I heard “homeless awareness” and thought I had made my decision right off the bat! Until I heard the name, “One Pencil can help bring Peace,” a project dedicated to benefit the students of Afghanistan who did not have the simplest necessities required for education. My perception of this class suddenly turned upside down. I expected to learn from this class through the standard methods of lecturing and writing meaningless essays. However, I found myself becoming a part of something amazing, an opportunity that would give students like myself, who are yearning for knowledge, a chance to learn.
I was always taught the importance of education throughout my life and how it can make or break my future, but I have never truly appreciated that statement until now. The power of education is one that extends beyond our understanding. It has the ability to transform an entire community by allowing them to perceive and comprehend the mechanics of society as well as illustrate the crucial role they play in it. Education plays a pivotal role in showing these people that they have the capability to change the world.
|Children in a classroom without walls at the Abdul Hali Mazare School in Mazar I Sharif, Afghanistan (Photo courtesy: The Stony Brook School)|
|Some of the supplies that our class shipped to Afghanistan on Jan 24, 2011|