To launch our website, we celebrated with a Charity Birthday Contest where contestants shared personal acts of charitable giving. We were overwhelmed with amazing responses by people who have a passion for unleashing their goodness onto the world. The Charity Birthday team is excited to announce the contest winners! Each story is incredible. We hope that you enjoy!
In this post, we are highlighting Nipunika. Nipunika started her own platform called Belonging Starts Here. This program gives backpacks to foster youth with essential items that they may feel uncomfortable asking their foster parents for. Nipunika was in the foster care system herself so she is deeply connected with this mission. For more information on Nipunika’s program visit: http://www.nipunikacoe.com/belongingstartshere/
Question 1: What inspires you to give back to society?
It really goes back to the saying you get what you give. One turning point in my life would be when I rounded up clothing, toiletries, and other items to donate to a local shelter. I remember walking up the stairs to drop off the bags and when I walked back out I had this sudden deja vu moment. This is when I realized that instead of walking out with a bag of donations I was finally able to walk in with donations. Before I went into the foster care system at the age of 7 my birth family needed assistance, at the age of 15 I was adopted and was able to give back to the community that has given me so much.
Question 2: What are your favorite ways to be charitable?
I have always tried to give back to the areas that have helped me but my favorite giving back story of mine would be the summer I would go to the local food shelf and help out with prepping lunch, cooking lunch and then serving to the people in need. My adoptive dad would always bring me on his motorcycle and we sometimes would go for a ride after. My Sundays that summer was fulfilling in many ways. I got to give back, heal, put my problems into perspective, and I got to bond with my dad. I almost always bring someone with me when I give back so they too can feel the infectious and addictive feeling when you do so and in return, we get to build a relationship and grow together.
Question 3: How has giving back affected you?
Giving back has really put my situation into perspective. It has allowed me to heal by seeing others become better versions of themselves, knowing that a small part of that was me. It has healed me emotionally to know that I have come far to be able to give back. I encourage everyone to find something that they wished was there when they were younger or when they were going through a hard situation and find a way to give back. This was the reason I started Belonging Starts Here.
Nipunika embodies the spirit of Charity Birthday. If you have an awesome story that you’d like to share, fill out our contact form! We’d love to hear from you and highlight your act of kindness.