Youth Forward scholarship summer 2016 – Making Change

Name: Carla Chehadeh
From: San Diego , California
Grade: 11
School: University City High School
Votes: 0

Every week, I get the great opportunity of volunteering at UCSD Health for four hours,
and I have completed about 120 hours of volunteer service. I help the
nurses by running errands and labs, answering phones, cleaning,
getting and returning equipment, getting food for patients, and
helping ready rooms for future admissions. I also visit, talk, and
read to patients. In addition to that, when the patients only speak
Arabic, I work as a translator for nurses and patients, since I am
fluent in both Arabic and English; it feels amazing to know that I
helped the patients feel more at home when they knew that I can
understand them and speak the same language.

My biggest challenge as a volunteer was seeing the patients in pain and not
being able to do anything about it. I tried my best to decrease their
pain by listening to them and helping them with daily life
activities. Seeing a smile on their face or hearing a “thank you”
from them was the most satisfaction; it let me know that I helped in
some way to make their stay better, even if it was only for a few

This volunteer position helped me know who I want to be in the future and what I
want to do; a doctor. During this time, I learned that there is more
to being a doctor than medicine and physical exams; it is a very
rewarding job whether I help the patients eat, listen to their
stories, or just check up on them. It makes me really happy when
patients tell me that I would make a really good doctor. This
experience is showing me the patient side of the story, which will
better prepare me to become a successful doctor who gives the
patients the best care. I learned how to calm angry patients, and
show them that I only want to help them; I learned that the rude lady
once had a life filled with happiness and love and free of hospital
visits, pain, and helplessness.

For me, forward looking means doing things in the present in order to make the future
better and brighter; making positive change in the world starts by
tackling existing problems one at a time in order to provide a better
future for the following generations. My volunteer position at the
hospital is providing the patients a better stay that further helps
them with fighting their injuries and diseases and improving their
health. With the help of volunteers, the hospitals provide better
care for the patients.

If I were to come back in the future, I believe that my volunteer
activities would have made a difference. I help with returning
patients to their families and loved ones healthier. I am very proud
to be a part of the patients’ recovery journey, and I am looking
forward to helping make change in the lives of many others.

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