Autumn Meta is an active member of our Community Outreach Team at Common Hope and currently studies at the University of Minnesota. She’s amidst the most stressful semesters of her college career, yet this hasn’t stopped her from taking the initiative to look for ways to help a country and people she holds near and dear to her heart.
Autumn’s passion for serving the people of Guatemala sparked when she participated in her university’s volunteer abroad program in March of 2014, which partnered with Common Hope. While in Guatemala, Autumn worked in a school with children and what caught her attention was the limited number of books in the library. “I really loved to read when I was a kid, it was my favorite thing to do,” she says, “I really wanted these children to have the same opportunity and access to books as I had, so I told Common Hope that I wanted to do a book drive.”
When Autumn returned home, she started to organize a Spanish-language book drive. She talked to her friends and family and she reached out to social organizations and companies. By the end of the year, she had collected 400 books! Stacks of “libros” made its way to Guatemala in the school supply container that was sent to Antigua this past fall. Children in many of the schools we partner with now enjoy these books every day.
Autumn keeps her momentum going and has set a goal of collecting 600 books for 2015. To reach this amount, she has partnered with the Dead Feminist Society of Minnesota, a social group that has agreed to make the book drive their outreach project for the year.
Apart from this endeavor, Autumn is also active in other Community Outreach activities like the school supply drive, community fundraisers, event planning and speaking engagements. She says that she enjoys volunteering because it gives her a sense of involvement, community and joy; “I remember the people of Guatemala and I’m happy to do it.”
Autumn says she enjoys being part of the Community Outreach Team because it gives her freedom to organize her own projects. “I like being able to choose where I’ll go to speak, it makes it fun and easy.” She encourages people who are interested to join their next meeting to get a better idea of the work they do, and to see how they may share their talents for a good cause.
Thank you, Autumn, for all the hard work you do! We look forward to seeing those books pile up again this year and we’re grateful to have you on board with us.