In August, six AHS clubs came together to help a homeless Kennesaw State University student afford another full year of college. These six AHS clubs (Working Together for Change, BETA Club, Key Club, LEO Club, FBLA and NHS) held a 5k run at Rock Mill Park in Alpharetta on August 21st. This is the first time that these clubs have come together to benefit one cause, and it was a success. Their 5k was able to raise over $2200, which was $200 over their target.
“I started Working Together for Change, a club that was founded to help end homelessness, with my brother Aditya three years ago. When we started the club, we had the idea of collaborating with other clubs here at AHS. After a couple of years of working with them, Kennesaw State University had a cause that all of our clubs could help contribute to, so we wanted to take advantage of it,” Nitish Sood, AHS senior and co-founder of Working Together for Change, said.
Kennesaw State University asked Working Together for a Change if they could contribute to a cause they had.
“They asked us if we would like to donate money to help raise funds for their scholarship that helps academically driven students who are in desperate financial need afford another year of college,” Sood said.
Working Together for Change and the other clubs at AHS had the idea to raise the money needed together to help Kennesaw State’s cause by organizing a 5k.
Working Together for Change, and their message, has quickly become a nationwide organization, with chapters in Georgia, New Jersey, and even one in Silicon Valley, California.
“All of our chapters were holding these 5ks at around the same time. One in Athens held the same event, just a day before ours… The week before ours, there was one held in Silicon Valley. We were trying to organize ours all around the same time so we could say that not only are these separate pockets of communities coming together to support this local, non-profit, but that we should do it on a larger, national level,” Sood said.
Ever since its founding, Working Together for Change has wanted to make a big impact in the Alpharetta-Johns Creek area. One of their founding principles included the need to cooperate with the already existing clubs at AHS (for example LEO Club and FBLA), in order to be able to make an even bigger impact on the community.
“It was really great to see all of the volunteer organizations, and some other clubs as well, come together because I personally know all of these club leaders. I reached out to all of these leaders and said that this was something that I wanted to do. They were all very supportive,” Sood said.
All of the clubs involved were able to make a difference and take something away from the 5k they put on. Each of the clubs involved were able to contribute a unique aspect that was able to make this event such a success.
“FBLA was very instrumental in getting volunteers to help set up and support the run. BETA club was very nice at actually getting the volunteers to actually run,” Sood said.
Because of the amount of success that came out of the 5k, the clubs are already in the process of scheduling another event in the future that will be similar to this event. They hope that their next event will be even more successful.
“A lot of our volunteering events are too often something like donating cans or donating something else physical. It’s certainly a good thing to do, but you never really get that tangible feeling like, ‘Here is what I did to make someone’s life better’. Since we were actually participating in the event itself, it made it such a more successful event. All of the leaders of the different clubs came together and talked about doing something later in the year. The biggest key takeaway is that even though this event was such a huge success for us, it was a ‘stepping-stone’ to something greater,” Sood said
Photo Credits: Nitish Sood