As a granddaughter to a survivor of the Armenian genocide, I am personally affected by the Good Will of people who help those in need.
My grandfather was orphaned and living in Romania when he was gifted an anonymous scholarship to a school in Venice. From there, he was able to make his way to America, fought in WWII, returned to the States and began a company to support his new family.
The full story of Rags to Riches does not involve one person. It involves trust, faith, ingenuity, hard work, smart work, and accepting and returning help from others.
His good works began small, but as he grew in blessings, he was able to give back in more significant ways. He commissioned a fresh water system for his home country where villagers previously had to walk miles for fresh water. He shipped dozens of used copy machines from the states to businesses in Armenia who were unable to afford necessary equipment to keep up.
My grandfather's life taught me the importance of giving back. I've intentionally made it a habit to seek ways to help others as he did. But not just by donating money. Philanthropy starts small, with gestures as simple as lending a listening ear to someone who needs to be heard, holding the door open for a stranger, buying the next in line's coffee, or simply smiling at a passerby.
I am pleased to support and share the following charities who I believe embody the same principles:
- Armenian Relief Society - Helps support social, educational, health, and welfare efforts of the Armenian people throughout the world.
- Variety The Children's Charity - Provides life-changing equipment, services, and experiences to children who have special needs and gifts
- Sow Good Now - Teaches children philanthropy through sports
- Jacob’s Place - Brings light, hope and positivity to families with autistic children
- Free Wheelchair Mission - Do you want to know what true gratitude looks like? Have a conversation with someone who's been to the highest poverty places and seen a mother's face as her handicapped child is given a wheelchair. Next time you spend $80 like it's nothing, think about that scene - $80 bought the wheelchair.