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Helping in Haiyan: a man-made mission to serve

LEHI — There is a hashtag that is quite popular right now: #firstworldproblems. I often wonder how many people who use it really understand what it means. I learned the true meaning at age 21 when I received a research grant to go and study the changing roles of women in the Marshall Islands. I was raised in a middle-class, loving and educated home filled with opportunities and resources. My time in the Marshalls gave me my first real glimpse of true poverty.

Food was scarce, leprosy and infant mortality were high, and the prospect of anything changing was low because there were no real natural resources. After two months, I went home to America changed forever. This past Sunday I had an experience that allowed me the rare opportunity to reflect on that young girl just returning home from Majuro determined to never forget what she had seen and always be grateful for the magnitude of her blessings.

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