My life changed during the summer of 2018, while on the Dor L’Dor camp trip to Israel 5,464 miles away from home. We visited Save a Child’s Heart (SACH), an organization that provides free, life-saving heart surgeries to children from third-world countries. After hearing the organization’s mission – “Politics are politics, but a kid’s a kid, and every one of them deserves a chance at life” – I texted my mom and said that I would raise $15,000 before I graduated high school. I planned to sponsor a surgery. To date, I have raised over $9,000!
Even with all the fundraising, I knew I still needed to do more. I went back to SACH by myself to volunteer. During my two weeks at SACH in Israel, I met kids from across the globe. None of us spoke the same language, but we turned building blocks into castles and coloring pages into masterpieces. We played and danced with each other and they even taught me words in their languages.
Even though it is a lofty goal, I hope to be able to sponsor another child’s surgery by the end of this school year. It is an uphill climb, but I am enjoying every minute of it. To make a donation to Lila’s fundraiser for Save a Child’s Heart: classy.org/fundraiser/1735497.
Lila Caplan, of Swampscott, is a graduate of the Academy at Penguin Hall in Wenham and recently started her freshman year at Indiana University.