This I Believe

Megan - Marietta, Georgia
Entered on December 17, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: change

I believe that if you want to see a change in the world, change it. I know what it feels like to not think we can help. We are glued to a seat. We cannot budge. It takes something powerful to unglue us. A quote was powerful to me. Mohandas Ghandi said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

Before I read those words, I blamed the world’s problems on the government. “The government is in charge. They are obligated. The government should go to Sudan and get rid of rebel armies. Not me, I cannot help.” But I was the one who wanted life in Sudan to improve. I complained. Therefore, I was obligated. But I also could not just stand between two opposing forces and just say, “Oh excuse me. Can you please stop murdering and kidnapping each other?” I needed back up. So a few other students and I chose to set up an event in order to raise genocide awareness throughout our high school. Our team taped dozens of posters through the halls advertising the event. We researched different volunteer opportunities, so students could sign up to volunteer in Sudan and in our city. We spent months organizing, decorating, planning and pleading administration for permission. Our efforts took effect. The night of the event the school’s theatre flowed with students. We sold over two hundred t-shirts, and all of the proceeds went to a charity in Sudan. Students lined up at booths to volunteer. But the part of the event that had the biggest impact was the documentary. We showed a gripping, graphic and gruesome documentary on genocide among the Sudanese. In the student-filled audience, tears fell. People learned. People sympathized.

Those were changes. Small, but all the miniscule and positive changes build a step ladder leading to the major changes society would want to see. Poverty, hunger, rape, disease and genocide will slowly be erased. Our team saw the change; we created it. I believe if you want change, make it. Passivity does not mold our world. Actions do.