by Saged Ahmed (YES 2019-20, Egypt, hosted with CIEE in Edmonds, WA)
A week ago, I traveled to Seaside, Oregon with a group of other students and my local coordinator to help clean up the local beach. We first went to the aquarium, who supported us by giving us bags and gloves to pick up garbage. As we walked around the beach looking for trash, the locals looked at us proudly and happy that there are people willing to do what we were doing. That was one of the best feelings I’ve had. When a stranger came up to me thanking me and telling me we need people like me, it gave me so much energy to continue.
After that, I realized how important community service is for the community. I really think there is no successful community if there are no volunteers or people who serve it without seeking any profit. This experience made me understand the importance of volunteering and I’ve started looking for ways I can apply the idea in my home country.