Riya’s Experience with the Coalition for the Homeless

This summer, I volunteered with the Coalition for the Homeless. I went on the thursday night downtown food van which stops at 7 places between 7 and 10 at night. At the stops, we pass out soup, bread, milk and oranges to people in need of food. Working with the Coalition was very rewarding, as I enjoyed making connections with folks I have met before and meeting new people who were so grateful for the food they received. Homelessness and poverty is such a big issue in NYC, and so many people have nothing to eat, and the Coalition does an awesome job of providing food to New Yorkers who need it every day and night, 365 days a year. It was my third summer working with the Coalition, and I hope to keep volunteering there in the future.

Riya’s Experience Volunteering with the Coalition for the Homeless and The Delhi Blind Relief Association

This summer, I volunteered with the Delhi Blind Relief Association (also known as the Delhi blind school), and the Coalition for the Homeless.

I volunteered 16 hours over 2 weeks in Delhi at the Blind Relief Association. There, I made candles (called diyas) and bags for their main fundraiser, the Diwali bazaar. I also interacted with the students in the multi training course. At the blind school, I had the opportunity to attend a graduation there. It was so heartwarming to see the kids singing “We Shall Overcome”, because they truly have overcome so many challenges. It was my second summer volunteering at the Blind School. At the end of our time at the Blind School, my sister Anya and I made a film about our time there.

Back in NYC, I volunteered 5 weeks with the Coalition for the Homeless. I went on the Thursday night downtown food van which stops at 7 places between 7 and 10 at night. At those stops, the other volunteers and I passed out soup, bread, milk and oranges to people in need of food. I love volunteering with the Coalition because it is so rewarding to see all the people we help truly grateful for us. It was my second summer working with the Coalition and I definitely want to continue doing it. Some of the stops were much bigger than others, including in Chinatown where the line would sometimes be up to 100 people long.