Written by: Dhanu Senthilkumaran
A wise man once said, “The best way t o lose yourself is to find yourself in the service of others.”
Today, Hopkinton High School students residing in Legacy Farms adhered to this motto by conducting a winter food drive in partnership with the non-profit organization: Sewa International. Sewa’s mission is to serve humanity in distress, aid local communities, and promote volunteerism. The volunteers from Hopkinton include; Shubhanjay Khanal, Dhanu Senthilkumaran, Vasishta Malisetty, Suneet Pathangay, Aaditya Saini, Krutarth Parmar, Divyansh Srivastava, Aditya Sathishkumar, Aryan Shah, Hemankit Vallurapalli, and Parth Tare. Over a two-week timespan, volunteers went door-to-door across their community, handing out flyers and collecting any non-perishable food items to deliver to food pantries across the state. Due to the pandemic, times have become extremely difficult for many people. Food drives, like the one happening in Legacy Farms, are a selfless way to take charge of this growing issue in society. Lead volunteer Shubhanjay Khanal has led multiple projects with Sewa International for the past year.
“My mom Shova Khanal Sharma has been a part of the organization for the past five years. Seeing her help others in need inspired me to also volunteer. A little effort goes a long way” he says. Khanal also helped motivate his friends around the community to help out as well. He is currently undergoing his first internship program with Sewa and is excited about his future with the organization.
First-year volunteer Aaditya Saini also had positive things to say about his experience. “When I heard about the winter food drive going on, I wanted to do everything in my power to help others in need. Food is a necessity everyone should have access to, so when Shubhanjay told me about the opportunity, it was a no-brainer to volunteer for Sewa.”
Youth volunteer, Suneet Pathangay was deeply enlightened from his time volunteering for Sewa. “The volunteer program opened my eyes to the world I live in today. It taught me to not take the little things in my life for granted. I realized how privileged we are to have a roof over our heads and three meals to eat every day” he says.
When asked about what the volunteer program entailed, Khanal explained, “We split up into groups and handed out flyers, spreading awareness about the food donations, across the entire Legacy Farms neighborhood. We then collected the non-perishable food items and inventoried them. Finally, we distributed the items amongst three sections to be shipped off to three different food pantries.”
The boys explained how gratifying it was, knowing that their hard work and dedication would help feed individuals in need. They also talked about how working alongside their peers made the process that much easier.
“Working alongside our friends was a lot more comfortable and easier. We were all able to have a good time, while also being productive and getting things done. The food drive brought us all closer together and we are very grateful for that.”
The volunteers concluded stating that their project was not limited to spreading awareness about the food crisis occurring around the world, but to also encourage other kids around the community to take action and lend a helping hand.