FEMA Youth Volunteers Work With Tzu Chi to Help Those In Need

Greater Washington D.C.  |  July 13, 2023
On June 17th, the Washington D.C. Region had the honor of inviting Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) youth team to participate in their food distribution event. Photo/Wendy Tsai

Written by Wendy Tsai
Translated by Ariel Chan
Edited by Patrick McShane

Tzu Chi USA is an important partner of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and for 25 years both organizations have worked together to assist Americans facing difficulties during and after disasters. On May 22nd, Tzu Chi Washington D.C. Region held a meeting with FEMA guests, aiming to worth together to provide aid to more people in times of need.

Tzu Chi and FEMA proposed the possibility of more collaborative projects based on their shared interests, skilled stets, and deep mutual respect borne of many years of collaboration. On June 17th, continuing the good reporte established in May with the FEMA team, representatives from the Washington D.C. Region invited the FEMA youth volunteer team to participate in a food distribution event.

The members listened attentively to the guidance about the distribution work provided by Tzu Chi volunteers. Photo/Wendy Tsai
The youth volunteer team carefully inspected each potato to ensure that they were in good condition before being distributed. Photo/Wendy Tsai

In addition to helping with the distribution of approximately 200 pounds of potatoes from the food bank, the youth volunteer team also took on the tasks of translation and supply distribution. They meticulously checked each potato for damage, ensuring that only the best were sent out. With the assistance of these young people, the process of organizing and distributing the food was quickly completed.

People held bags of food and had smiles on their faces. Tzu Chi’s warmth enabled many families to enjoy a good meal. Looking at their happy faces, the members of the youth volunteer team felt a sense of fulfillment and joy from their efforts.

A variety of food items were neatly arranged by the volunteers. Photo/Wendy Tsai

Elizabeth Kazeem from the youth volunteer team enjoyed the distribution experience, sharing, “I really like meeting people in the community and helping them through their experiences. I find it very meaningful.”

I am delighted to participate in this activity and distribute food to the Latinx community that I love. I am grateful to Tzu Chi for giving us the opportunity to be here.

The distribution of food was quickly completed thanks to the efforts of the young volunteers. Photo/Wendy Tsai
People held bags of food with smiles on their faces and returned home with full hearts. Photo/Wendy Tsai

Having just concluded this food distribution, Christopher Telles is already looking forward to the next one, saying, “This was a very good experience, and honestly, I hope we can participate in this activity again. I highly recommend anyone or any volunteer organization to experience such a wonderful journey.”

Through the act of donating time and talent openly and generously, the youth volunteer team learned from Tzu Chi volunteers how to give respectfully with both hands and experience gratitude, respect, and love. They gained a deeper understanding of the importance of performing good deeds and grasped the meaning and value behind it. Tzu Chi provides a platform for them to learn and grow together, allowing the younger generation to exhibit their generosity and make deep connections within the community.

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