Volunteering Changed My Life

Belle, Daniella, and Yaacov Ginsburg
Belle, Daniella, and Yaacov Ginsburg

When I was 14 years old, I volunteered in a homeless shelter helping physicians who volunteered to screen patients for medical conditions. It was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. I couldn’t believe that I helped discover three people who had serious problems but no health insurance and yet some dedicated doctors treated these people for free. Here I was, a ninth grader making a difference. I have seen over and over that it is the youth of the world that are more idealistic and unselfishly committed to making this world a better place than any other group.

Together, I worked with my siblings, Belle and Yaacov, who have also been involved in community service, to develop the idea of AACTeens – Aact Today for a Better Tomorrow. We started by making some presentations at the Julian Krinsky Camps and Programs, which attract people internationally. Before we knew it, coming out of the woodwork were so many teens wanting to make a difference in this world. AACTeens has changed my life, as I have had a chance to work with so many teens who really want to tap into their energies to help the world, and I realized the future of the world really does rest in the young. We all know internationally people across the world cooperate in the fields of medicine, athletics and the arts. Shouldn’t it also be community service that brings people together and motivates teenagers to do the right thing in life? That’s what AACTeens is all about – bringing people together to make a difference.

I have now decided to go into the field of education, probably because of AACTeens. I encourage all of you who read this website, to think what is most important in your life – your family, your friends and the world you live in. What can you do to unite your family, help your friends and care for those around you? You have the power to change this world. Each one of us comes to this world for a special reason. Find your place and make your spark. Help light the way to a path of goodness and caring.

Daniella Ginsburg
Stern College New York
Class of 2010

The premise of AACT is that exchanging and highlighting community service projects will serve to expand both opportunity and actual implementation of such efforts. Encouraging service will not only impact the lives of those in need and improve communities, but will also foster the development of student character and leadership capabilities. AACT is dedicated to engaging young people in the satisfying and enriching experience of helping others, and in turn, inspiring their peers to do the same.

AACT has several key components:

  • A survey to gather and share information regarding existing community service systems in participating high schools
  • An annual event at each school to share and celebrate community service experiences
  • An AACT website and internet dialogue devoted to the sharing of community service projects and links to related organizations