The High Schoolers Who Raised $180,000 For Charity Are The Reason I Still Believe In Humanity

The High Schoolers Who Raised $180,000 For Charity Are The Reason I Still Believe In Humanity

A true story, and one very close to my heart.

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Yes, you read that right. One hundred eighty thousand dollars. For charity. In two months. And I'm lucky to say that I got to be a part of it.

Last year, I was a senior in high school trying to balance college applications and five AP classes and extracurriculars all at once. I had too much to do, but somehow my number one commitment was student council. Why is that, you ask?

Since 2004, my high school's student council had orchestrated an annual charity ball to raise money for local nonprofits. At first, it had just been a nice thing to do, but as the years went on, the amount of money raised kept increasing. When I was a freshman, they raised $92,000 for Interfaith Food Shuttle between October and December, and I remember being convinced that they could ever beat that. (Spoiler alert! They did!) All the people I met on council told me it was a life-changing experience, and I wanted in.

I ended up joining my junior year, and I realized that the people I was working with were some of the most dedicated and passionate kids I'd ever known. Although we set lofty monetary goals for ourselves each year (100k, 120k, and 150k my respective sophomore, junior, and senior years), we didn't define ourselves based on the money (even though we made, like, CRAZY amounts). What really mattered to us was the service. We spent time with people in homeless shelters, we volunteered in food pantries, we canvassed in our neighborhoods, and we informed our community about our cause. It was developing into a school-wide effort, with fundraising events like kickball tournaments and coffee sales to engage the student body to help out.

Of course, it was super stressful at the time, but now that I'm not doing it anymore I see how much I miss it. There's nothing like working towards a mutual goal with a bunch of people that want to achieve it just as badly as you that can motivate you as much as Charity Ball did. Our drive was reflected in the way we talked to our peers about donating or educated strangers on how impactful our contribution would be, or in the joy we expressed at the final showing of the check. I was mostly amazed that we were just a group of kids that cared enough about the world to not give up, even if the deadline was 10 days away and we still needed to raise 60 thousand dollars.

Last year's Charity Ball sticks in the back of my head like it was yesterday. Everyone was nervous, but we knew we would be proud no matter how much we made. The true meaning of Charity Ball was that an entire community- our school, other schools, other school systems, local companies, people from other states, or other countries even- was so willing to drop their differences for this one thing that benefited the greater good. I can't pretend to say it could've been done without the support from our friends, families, and teachers: it couldn't have been. Every person involved in the process gave their own part, and that's the reason we were able to pull it off.

Recently, I spoke with the current student body vice president. She thinks of me as her role model, but in all honesty, I'm way more inspired by her. I can tell she genuinely cares about the organization they're working with this year and wants to help as much as she can. It really touches me that they keep doing this year after year not because they necessarily have something to prove, but really out of the goodness of their hearts. And in a world where we're fed terrible news every day, the stuff that they do gives me a lot of hope.

The kids aren't just alright- they're awesome.

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7 Things You Do If You’re One Of Those 'I Always Order Chicken Tenders' People

It's hard to love food but also hate it at the same time.

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Growing up, my mom would usually have to cook me a separate dinner from my siblings. Why? Because I was ridiculously picky and wouldn't eat the same foods as everyone else. Trust me, it gets old. It's not my fault certain things just taste gross, you learn to live with it.

1. You eat something you hate just to see if you still hate it

I'll take a bite of a burger every once in a while just to reaffirm that it still tastes like dirt. I just have to know. Don't even get me started on vegetables.

2. When trying to explain what you actually like to eat, people give you major side eye

Don't ask me about my eating habits unless you want to get into a long, confusing conversation.

3. Eating at someone else’s house when you were younger was a pain

You hate to tell their parents just how much you hate the food that they gave you. So, you sucked it up and ate it anyway only to come home and whine to your parents.

4. There’s one thing on any menu you always fall back on...even if it’s on the kids menu

Pizza, maybe. Chicken tenders, always.

5. Trying a new food is a very proud moment

It's like, wow! Look at me being all adventurous.

6. When you realize you actually like some new food, that’s an even more amazing moment

Crazy times. This rarely happens.

7. Sometimes it’s the texture, sometimes it’s the flavor, all the time it’s left on your plate

Oops. At restaurants it's either left on your plate or your order is very specified.

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Why You Should Consider Spring Recruitment

the benefits of sorority life

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It's that time of year again!! Time for sororities to get back in the recruitment swing and gain some awesome new members! I serve as recruitment coordinator for my sorority here at The University of Georgia, and love everything recruitment has to offer.

Some of my closest friends in my sorority rushed in the spring as opposed to the beginning of the fall semester. Talking with them and having helped plan spring recruitment, we all came to the common conclusion that spring recruitment is the best!!!

I know that a lot of girls hold themselves back from joining a sorority because of the overwhelming journey it takes to receive a bid. However, spring recruitment is different because often times it is a whole lot more low key and less intense than the typical fall recruitment. It is done on a much smaller scale and really allows you to talk with a handful of sisters in order to get a better idea of what the sorority offers. There can be games, food, and activities involved - who doesn't love the sound of that??!

Maybe last semester was a tough one or you just weren't sure sorority life was for you- whatever the case may be, now is your opportunity to be a part of one of the best things college has to offer!

I'll admit I definitely did not see myself as the "typical sorority girl," but here I am convincing you to take a chance. I can truthfully say that the time I have spent in my sorority has given me some of my favorite memories and has proven to be the biggest blessing. Being a sister has allowed me to travel, find personal growth, develop the strongest of friendships, and ultimately has given me the best support system. Going through my college experience knowing that I have a group of girls that have my back and are there to support me 24/7 has been such a gift. Plus it is always fun to have a class or study buddy! Not only do you gain best friends, but you truly do gain a family as well.

I know it can be a daunting task to put yourself out into an unfamiliar setting with new people, but I promise, if you embrace the experience and stay open you may just find yourself hanging out with your new best friends. Going through recruitment forces you of your comfort zone and pushes you in the best ways possible. Start the year off experiencing something new and exciting! It is so much fun to get to talk to new people and hear all new stories. I can truly tell you that I have laughed louder and smiled more because of taking a chance and going through recruitment. Seeing my sisters brightens my day and adds more joy to my life. And besides, what girl doesn't love an excuse to get all dolled up and put on her cutest outfit?!

Recruitment is a 11/10 experience – would 100% recommend!

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