My name is Nittai Malchin and I'm currently a Senior at Palo Alto High School. I have three younger siblings (twin 12 year-old brother and sister and a 7 year-old brother) and supportive parents. I enjoy music, movies, photography, soccer, and spending time with my friends and family, much like many other teenagers. However, I also have a profound passion for volunteerism and I am lucky enough to be in a situation where it’s possible for me to give back. That’s why I founded One Love Advocates.
The mission of One Love Advocates is to do whatever possible to improve access to education in communities that are struggling with destructive or endemic problems. How? First, by working hard, interacting with kids in Haiti, teaching them and learning from them. But also by utilizing technology, open source information and the power of the Internet and social media. I am planning to leverage open source educational software and tools in disaster affected and under-developed areas. My internship at www.ck12.org last summer taught me a lot about the power of collaboration and the potential of open source content in under served communities. I am, of course, going to utilize social media (such as this blog) to spread the word, communicate with others and make a difference. My generation is lucky to have a variety of ways to share stories and experiences quickly and, in a more tangible way, to make a real impact.
I got the idea for One Love Advocates when, along with the rest of the world, I was shocked by the devastating earthquake that hit Haiti on January 12, 2010. After a couple days of reflection and talking to my dad Omer Malchin, I decided that it was my duty to help the Haitian people achieve a better life. With some help from my family and friends, I constructed OneLove, a non-profit initiative aimed towards rebuilding Haiti through education. My mission is to help develop Haiti's infrastructure so that it improves in its education system in an innovative and sustainable manner.
After brainstorming ideas about how I would be able to have the most serious impact, I decided that I was going to travel to Haiti. This trip would allow me to do hands-on volunteer work, but more importantly, I would get a sense of what the most glaring needs in Haiti truly are. As a beginning photographer, I hope to document my journey in Haiti and back at home mixing words with photography and video to raise funds, raise awareness, and most of all raise hope for a better future in Haiti. Through learning from and working with organizations such as Waveplace (waveplace.com) and Haiti Partners (haitipartners.org) I feel as though I'll be able to not only restore Haiti's education system, but use this time as an opportunity to leapfrog and create a bright future for the Haitian people by educating the youth.
Taking inspiration from Margaret Mead who famously said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever does,” One Love Advocates is trying to make a difference, one small step at a time.