Since I embarked on this amazing journey of service, I have seen things and places that I never knew existed, met people I never thought I’d meet, and experienced countless life changing moments that I take with me wherever I go. Last year, around this time, I was preparing to spread my wings and venture on to high school. Before I could do that, I first had to complete middle school. At the middle school graduation, I had the honor of saying the final speech, and I decided to use it to ask all of my peers and everyone in the audience to leave a mark on the world but always remember their roots. Nearly a year later, I return to the very same gymnasium but this time, not as a student. I attended on behalf of Seeds of Hope, to accept the check the graduates were donating for their class gift. Last year, when I was the one making the tough decision of where to give the proceeds from our many fundraisers, I never imagined I would one day be on the other side. I am more grateful for the growth I’ve experienced through Seeds of Hope than there could possibly be words to describe. Recognition is the very last thing I do this all for, but to know that I am inspiring other young people to give back to their community is one of the most rewarding feelings. Not too long ago I sat exactly where they do, and if my story planted a single seed into the mind of just one of those students, then my mission is accomplished.