IAN MCKENNA/THE OBSERVER
It’s the end of spring semester. You check the Tapingo app to see your remaining declining balance dollars and, lo and behold, you have over $200 left. There are only a couple days of school remaining and only so many pints of Ben & Jerry’s you can buy from the Ram Café! What on earth are you going to do?
Fear not, for you can do some good with your spare DCBs. Your extra dollars can go beyond the Ram Cafe and really help someone in need. Here’s what I did –– I, with the help of some friends, used my remaining DCBs to buy meals for the homeless.
It all started thanks to my dad. We were at dinner one night and I was going on about my abundance of declining balance dollars and lack of days to spend them, when my dad suggested I use the money to give back and buy food for people experiencing homelessness, instead of letting it all go to waste. I loved it! I had the chance to connect with my community in a truly meaningful way. Each day on my walks to and from The Ailey School, I pass the faces of people I want to help, but I never have the resources to do so. But with over $270 and a group of friends, I was able to aid the people society too often forgets about and tries to ignore. We helped the people society deems invisible feel seen again.
My friends and I gathered together on that rainy Tuesday afternoon with a mission: to do something positive for the world. We went to Freshens with a big request –– 25 assorted flatbreads and wraps –– but they loved our plan to give back and were more than willing to help. On top of the wraps, I had enough DCB to also purchase 25 water bottles and 25 bags of Skittles as well. After the many wraps were made and the items were put in bags, we were ready to go out and do good in New York City.
We went all about the city; from 5th Ave. to 10th Ave., and from 62nd to 41st, we walked in the rain passing out meals to those in need. In the end, we walked around 5 miles, but it didn’t feel like much. We were more focused on helping others than ourselves.
Doing good makes you feel good. I felt good seeing the smiles on peoples faces as we handed them a hot meal, water, and candy. I felt good working together with my friends and Fordham’s community to make this happen and make people’s days.
Throughout the day, there was an overwhelming feeling of humanity. People connected with people on the most human level. I connected with my friends over our shared want to do something good in the world, with Fordham through the kind Ram Cafe employees who wanted to help us help others, and with the people of New York City we often leave behind, the homeless, with food and humanity. I saw them and they saw me, no longer invisible to the world. We all, deep down, want to be kind. Why not use what you can spare to share a little kindness to someone in need?