Noor, a sixth grader at the Frank A. Day Middle School in Newton, enjoys many activities such as art, tennis, and golf. Last year, when her fifth-grade class worked on their UN Global Goals Project, Noor and a few other students chose to write a persuasive essay on climate change. It was this research that prompted her to think more seriously about the issue. As the holiday season drew near, Noor decided it was time to take action, and so she did by posting the following impressive message to her friends and family members:

“I was thinking, the holidays are here and what better way to spend them caring for our world. You might have this feeling where you are so aware of everything going on around you, but you feel helpless, and you may ask yourself what can I do?

Well I have an idea, see Christmas itself is not all about presents. My proposal: To show that you care about the world all you need to do is give up half of your presents and/or its associated value. As Mohandas Gandhi said: ‘We are but mirror the world. All the tendencies present in the outer world are to be found in the world of our body. If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man [woman or kid] changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him…we need not wait to see what others do.’ Or in other words, let’s be the change we want to see in this world…not sure who exactly said this, but it does make a point. To demonstrate my motivation to stop climate change, I pledge to give up half of my Christmas presents this year.”

With that, Noor asked her grandparents, parents, aunts, and uncles to join her in making a difference by giving her half the presents they were intending to give her and put the rest towards this fund. She continued, “My parents liked my idea and pledged to match every dollar I am able to fundraise up to my target amount.”

Noor decided to donate 100% of these donations to benefit Green Newton’s environmental work to help make an impact — and will it ever! As of this writing, Noor’s fundraiser brought in over $1200, which will support Green Newton’s ongoing initiatives and programs to achieve environmental solutions and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in our community and beyond. At her young age, Noor has made the commitment to “not wait to see what others do.” She realizes she can help others to see that “stopping climate change is in our hands.”

Green Newton is immensely grateful to Noor and her parents, Salman and Salena, for their thoughtful generosity and determination to make an environmental impact in this way. Moreover, in addition to the Go Fund Me campaign, their family has also made the commitment to change more lighting to LEDs; set thermostats between 67 to 70 degrees, and use at least one electric car for transportation.” Noor and her family have become the change they want to see in the world, and they are sure to inspire others to follow their example.

Green Newton relies on contributions from supporters like Noor and her family to bring you this e-newsletter and our many other environmental initiatives. If Noor’s story inspires you, please consider creating your own fundraiser for Green Newton on Facebook by clicking