Meet Miram, a Superstar Fundraiser
Editor's Note: Meet Miram Omar, a 15-year-old high school student about to start 10th grade in her hometown of West Windsor, NJ. Miram discusses why she supports Action Against Hunger, as well as her plans for the future. Does her story inspire you to fundraise for us too? Learn how to get started.
What motivated you to fundraise for Action Against Hunger?
It may seem a bit silly, but what truly motivated me was watching an awards show where they gave an award for a "helping hand." The person who had won the award gave a beautiful speech about all her efforts and experiences helping underprivileged people and I realized I would love to have that feeling. To feel pride in making a difference in someone's world. So I thought about it for a while and asked myself, what is a problem in the world that can be solved? Hunger. I realized that while I have so much food that I have leftovers which usually end up going bad, some people do not even have enough food for one meal. So I decided to do something about it, and I did!
What was the best experience you had while raising awareness and funds for us?
I can honestly say I had a great time fundraising and when I tried it and saw how simple it was I wondered why everyone doesn't do it! Although I have to say what was great about this was watching people donate. I started off thinking if it was going to take a while to reach $100, but by the end of my first day I had already raised $120. People would ask me how much to donate, and I would say just a few cents could make a difference, but then they would put in a twenty dollar bill. People would often tell me "keep up the hard work." It made me proud to see people are willing to donate their own money, they appreciate that people are trying to help. That had to be the best experience for me, watching people spend their money on other people, and being proud of it.
How have your friends and family reacted when you told them you were volunteering for Action Against Hunger?
Mainly my family took it as just another thing I was going to try for a week, and then get tired of it. I used to do that with a lot of hobbies growing up, but now I really find myself enjoying communicating with people, asking for donations, explaining the work that Action Against Hunger does. I hope I can raise even more money, enough to know that my money and hard work is paying off and making a difference. And now, my family asks their friends, colleagues, and relatives to donate to me. My friends come with me to go to places and ask for donations, too. I could not have asked for a better or more efficient team and cause to work with.
Why is ending global hunger important to you?
I think it is unfair that so many people around the world have barely enough food to survive. I had to fast recently for a whole month during Ramadan, no food or beverages from sunrise to sunset, and it is actually much harder than it seems. The point of this Islamic tradition is to experience how people with no food must feel, and I realize we all say that we feel bad for those who are less fortunate, but we do not do enough about it. I also had heard an interesting quote, which got me thinking. The quote was, "There are more fruits in a rich man's shampoo, than on a poor child's plate." This quote stuck with me and I thought that this is not right. It isn't my goal to raise a certain amount of money, but it is to make a difference in many lives and raise greater awareness about global hunger and food insecurity.
What are your plans for the future after college?
I honestly have no idea what I would like to do. Although after my past experiences fundraising I have begun thinking about beginning my own organization to support global development issues which are often ignored.