GK Volunteer - Ziad Hijazi
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GK VOLUNTEER HIGHLIGHT
Ziad Hijazi is a first-generation Lebanese-American. His parents immigrated from Lebanese communities abroad, and their Lebanese culture bled heavily into his upbringing. With such a strong Lebanese community supporting him throughout his childhood, Ziad wanted to find ways to give back and support the culture that is such a big part of his identity.
“As a first-generation child, you tend to struggle with finding a balance between living in a new society while embracing your roots. Being Lebanese is such a big part of who I am. Now that I’m in a position to give back, I wanted to find ways to support the community and culture that I’m so proud to be a part of.”
Ziad currently is involved in the LA Cedars Rotary, a chapter of Rotary International that is comprised of Lebanese Americans living in Los Angeles. The Rotary is a professional networking organization, created to build up the communities around them. Ziad’s LA Cedars chapter focuses on supporting Lebanese communities from abroad, working in conjunction with Rotary chapters in Lebanon to facilitate projects such as providing proper water filtration to schools in underserved villages or delivering food boxes to areas in need.
He is also involved in California for Lebanon, a younger generation of Lebanese Ex-Pats in California, looking to support a better Lebanon. They are constantly organizing events and fundraisers to support a better, reformed Lebanon. Over the past couple weeks, California for Lebanon raised $15,000 with their project “Nehna Maakon” (We are with you), where they are partnering with non-profits in Lebanon to distribute food and necessities to the communities in need.
“For those who don’t know the current state of affairs Lebanon, the country declared bankruptcy in early 2020. Inflation has risen 350% since, to the point where people can’t afford even the most basic of necessities. We are doing all we can to help support from afar, but with the help from all communities around us, we can have a major positive impact on the future of Lebanon”
Links to reference:
LA Cedars website: https://lacedars.org/
California for Lebanon Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/Califorleb/
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