Zadia Deyhimi, a fifth grader from Port Washington has been doing her best to help others in the community since the COVID-19 pandemic struck Long Island. In light of the pandemic, Deyhimi, 11, created a charity called Citizens of the World.
“When COVID-19 happened, I was terrified,” Deyhimi said. “It didn’t seem real until somebody we know had [the virus]. I felt helpless. My Mom said to me ‘You can be scared and live in fear or you can do something to make a difference.’ So I decided to take action.”
For her birthday, Deyhimi asked her relatives to contribute money to Citizens of the World. Since the pandemic began, Deyhimi has raised $450 for her cause and was able to make a food donation to Our Lady of Fatima Church’s food pantry in Port Washington.
“I called Lady Fatima and spoke with Sister Catherine,” Deyhimi said. “I shared with her that I raised money and would like to use the money to buy food for the Lady Fatima Food Pantry. I asked her what type of food to buy and she shared with me to get food that I would like.”
Deyhimi was able to purchase several non-perishable food items such as pasta, tomato sauce, rice, beans, goldfish, peanut butter and jelly, which she was able to donate to the pantry.
“Sister Catherine truly was so thankful [for the donation],” Deyhimi said. “I felt so good that I could make a difference in my own small way.”
Throughout the coming weeks, Deyhimi plans to save up her allowance to be able to afford to purchase food for the food pantry again. She is hoping to learn how to create a website to be able to spread the word about her charity Citizens of the World, so that she can continue helping others.
Deyhimi wants to encourage other children her age to contribute and get involved in the community any way they can.
“Any small or big gesture can help,” Deyhimi said. “I know kids like me feel helpless at times but we can make a difference. I know I can’t solve the pandemic, but I can make a difference in somebody’s life in a positive way.”
For those looking to donate to Deyhimi’s charity, email firstname.lastname@example.org.