Youth Forward scholarship summer 2016 – Kindness Matters

Name: Kiersten Bluntzer
From: Odem, TX
Grade: High School Junior
School: Sinton Highschool
Votes: 0



My experience with the homeless started out when I was young. I was a
fifth grader in a school that embraced a stereotypical school that
was a victim of poverty. My school was falling apart and was very
dirty. Majority of the children there were very wild and there the
teachers who taught there usually did not have this school as their
first choice. I knew that most kids had problems at home but I was
too innocent to understand it.

It was not until the day that this large support group came to talk to
the kids and have them open up about their lives at home that I
realized how bad it really was. I was so mad at myself for being so
close to them and never even knowing that some of them did not have a
home to go to at night. I was inspired by this to make a difference.
I spoke to the counselor at the elementary and she informed me that
she would provide the students with a home, and that most of them
will be staying with other family members and that I did not need to
worry. I was content with the fact that they now had a home but it
opened my eyes to realize that the adults do not. I spoke then with
my youth leader at my church and we held food drives and offered
clean showers and the adults helped them with job applications. I was
not the originator of the program but I was very involved. I spent
probably ten hours or more every two weeks dedicating my time to
those in need. I began to think bigger and talked to my youth leader
again about doing something for other cities across the world. She
devised a plan that involved fifteen other youth members to head out
to New Orleans and work with a church there with the homeless people.

The trip lasted fourteen days and in those fourteen days we helped over
one hundred people. We had a system for showering and we had the
thrift stores donate clothes to us so that way after their shower the
people in need could change into clean clothes. Another important
thing that we did was we spent time with them and we listened to
their stories and we talked about their lives before where they were
and they told me that having someone to just listen to them made a
substantial difference in their lives. A homeless man I met named Red
Dog told me, “You are a youngin’ and the difference you are
making in this world already is a great thing, and I know that
helping me and these people around me is not just helping us but is
also changin’ you and for the better.” He was right, since those
two weeks in New Orleans I am much more humble and grateful of
everything in my life. It inspired me to help out back home even
more. Now even to this day I spend my time at food pantries and
homeless shelters. I donate my clothes to the children and need and I
serve at soup kitchens. Every Christmas my family adopts a child to
give presents, clothes, and food to.

I plan to continue on my journey to whatever college I attend and make
a difference there too. The biggest challenge is to find others to
help me and to find enough money to feed the people in need. It is a
lot of hard work and dedication to help those in need because there
are so many people in the world, but just knowing that I made a
positive difference in someone’s life is satisfactory enough for me
and all of the hours and time I spend becomes truly worth it just for
a warm smile on someone’s face.

In the future I hope to become a doctor and truly help medically wise
with these people and on a larger scale. I want to travel the world
and make a difference for as many people as I can reach. I plan to
progress these issues by using my talents and experiences. There will
always be poverty in the world and we cannot ignore it. The
activities that I have done can make an impression on others to make
the same differences. I am not working to be known I am working to
make the problem known. Forward looking is taking an issue and using
your talents to progress help for the issue. The activities that I do
are just the first step in how I plan to reform the world. No matter
what I accomplished today it isn’t about that or about what I plan
to accomplish tomorrow, forward looking is about what have I made
better and how has given back going to progress the future in a
positive way.

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