Be the change you desperately wish for

Describe your most meaningful involvement in your community, including what your role is/has been in the activity/ies.


For three days, after a heavy equatorial rain, the main road to my village remained impassable. This implied that some families had to subsist without their normal meals, since their breadwinners could not work. Transportation of goods using motorbikes was an income generating activity for many people back home. With the road being in such a deplorable condition, all those people could not work. Everyone waited for change. No change was forthcoming. We were staring at an impending crisis.

Since no one was willing to take the initiative, I felt as though the responsibility of changing the situation was settling on my shoulders. I mobilized a group of youth in the neighborhood to clear the earth-filled road; a temporary solution had been reached. However, the problem with addressing symptoms and not the root cause of a problem is that, it all counts for naught because the problem returns sooner or later. Using the little funds we received from the local authorities, we built gabions along the section of the road that was perennially susceptible to erosion. These gabions prevented the eroded soil from being washed onto the road, offering long-term security.

Our accomplishment may not have won worldwide accolades, but I'm certain...

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