News Article

Students Spotlight: KCLSU Volunteer Stories - Afghan Welfare Society



Tell us about your projects and initiatives.

One of our main initiatives is the charity campaign, which involves organising a series of fundraising events over an extended period. These events are diverse, ranging from cultural nights, football tournaments, and movie nights to karate and dance master classes. Our goal is to be inclusive, attracting a wide range of participants from students to local communities. Reflecting on our experiences, we decided to expand our reach and impact by forming our registered charity, Empayhos Foundation. This new venture aims to support diverse causes, including helping homeless people in the UK, providing toys and school equipment, and promoting wider participation in education and careers, especially in competitive fields like medicine and dentistry.

Can you tell us more about the impact of your initiatives?

Our initiatives have had a significant impact on the communities we've supported. We provided essential medical aid, including a running ambulance, in Afghanistan. We tackled the stigma around blood donation and created a donor database, ensuring timely blood transfusions for those in need. Our food packages and winter aid supported hundreds of families, maintaining their dignity while meeting their essential needs. The projects in 2022-2023, such as building schools and providing clean water, have had a lasting effect. They've enhanced education opportunities and improved health, reducing sickness and death caused by contaminated water sources. Our language lessons and mentoring events have empowered students, providing them with valuable skills and knowledge, free of charge. We've not only made a difference in the lives of those we've directly supported but also built a sense of community and shared purpose among our participants.

Could you share some memorable moments or success stories from your projects?

One memorable moment was when we organised an emergency appeal for internally displaced individuals in Afghanistan. Witnessing the community come together and provide essential items to those in need was incredibly heartwarming. Another touching experience was during Eid when we provided gifts to children who had experienced significant hardships. Seeing their smiles and knowing we could bring a moment of happiness to their lives was truly rewarding. Additionally, the feedback we received from our mentoring event was overwhelmingly positive. Students expressed gratitude for the opportunity to gain insights into their desired careers, especially since such programs are often costly. Knowing that we're making education and career guidance accessible to all, regardless of their financial background, is a testament to the impact of our initiatives.

Why you care about these kinds of issues and where you got your inspiration from?

Mahdi: Well, my journey into charity work began unexpectedly. I was initially supposed to perform at a charity magic show, but I ended up being a magician despite having no experience in magic or public speaking. The support from the community during that event deeply moved me. One story that particularly inspired me involved an orphan girl who faced immense trauma. Witnessing her resilience motivated me to focus on projects that support mental health and rehabilitation. It's about creating sustainable change that truly helps people.

Sabrina: For me, it's about giving back and helping people from different backgrounds. We aim to break barriers, especially for those aspiring to pursue fields like medicine or dentistry. Volunteering allows us to support these individuals, providing guidance and creating a supportive community. It's incredibly rewarding to see how small efforts can transform lives.

How do you recruit volunteers for your projects?

Initially, building our social media presence was crucial. We engaged students through platforms like WhatsApp and reached out to medical and dental student groups. Word of mouth also played a significant role. Once people volunteered and experienced the impact firsthand, they were eager to participate in more events. We've also used events like bake sales to raise awareness. By sharing our mission and the outcomes of our projects, we've attracted like-minded individuals. We've learned that personal experiences are powerful motivators for people to get involved.

How do you measure your success, and what was the most successful project you organised?

Winning awards like the Most Improved Society and Group of the Year showcased the growth and impact of our efforts. Seeing the tangible impact through pictures and reports from the charities we supported is also immensely rewarding. One of the most exciting moments was when we realised the impact of our fundraising efforts. Seeing the positive change we could create fuelled our passion. It's like watching your child grow; the initial planning and challenges are worth it when you witness the difference you've made.

What personal impact has volunteering had on you both?

Mahdi: Personally, it has made me more appreciative of what I have. It taught me problem-solving, communication, and leadership skills. Volunteering also inspired us to create our own charity, driven by the experiences and lessons we gained.

Sabrina: Volunteering has shown me the power of community and the importance of appreciating what we have. It's about being able to reflect, learn, and grow while making a difference in the lives of others.

What challenges did you face, and how did you overcome them?

Initially, building our society's presence was a challenge. We overcame it by diversifying our committee and making our events inclusive. Problem-solving became crucial, like when we had to improvise during a pottery painting event due to unexpected issues with supplies. We learned that adaptability and resilience are key. Overcoming challenges involved being open to new ideas and feedback. Listening to our volunteers' experiences and implementing changes based on their suggestions helped us evolve and improve our events.

Lastly, what advice would you give to inspire other King's students interested in volunteering?

Be open-minded and seize every opportunity. You never know where it might lead. Volunteering not only changes others' lives but transforms yours as well. Embrace the unknown and make a difference. Don't hesitate; just dive in. Trying new things opens doors you never thought possible. The impact you make, no matter how small, can ripple into something extraordinary. Give it a chance; you won't regret it.



Cookies allow us to provide the best experience using our kclsu website.

Read about how kclsu handles data , and more steps you can take to protect your data.

Select the optional cookies, and scroll down to give consent.