“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.” Even though these famous words have been misattributed to Winston S. Churchill, their sentiment still holds true for all of us at Intouch Solutions. Our culture is based on several beliefs, one of which is the importance of giving back and finding ways to have a positive impact on the world.  We love sharing fellow Intouchers’ philanthropic endeavors and are proud of everything our employees do.

This past March, Emilee Miller, account manager in Chicago, spent nine days volunteering in Haiti with HOPE worldwide, an international charity that delivers sustainable, high-impact, community-based services to the poor and needy.

During her time in Haiti, Emilee worked primarily in a local orphanage and spent time in a village built specifically for those who lost their homes in the 2010 earthquake and orphans who have aged out of orphanages while they complete vocational training.

Emilee decided on this mission because she desired to help others in a situation outside of her comfort zone. Prior to her trip, Emilee called on her fellow Chicago Intouchers to provide donations for the orphanage. In her appeal for donations, she acknowledged the challenge ahead: “In a few weeks, I’m going to Haiti and will be working for a week in an orphanage through an organization — HOPE) — that my church sponsors.  Yes, me. Bucket showers. Zero Internet/electricity.” While she had done some volunteer work in high school, nothing could prepare her for this. Her appeal was heard, and Intouchers piled on the support, as always.

With a suitcase filled to the brim with toys and clothing, Emilee arrived in Haiti, overwhelmed by the earthquake damage and lack of clean water. However, the joy and pride the residents of Haiti showed in spite of these obstacles surprised Emilee. One woman she spoke with commented on how proud she was of Haiti’s resilience and expressed her desire to remain in Haiti despite the issues. “Why would I leave here?” she asked. “It is my home. I love it.”

When getting involved in a cause greater than yourself, it’s next to impossible to walk away and not feel humbled. For Emilee, this experience served as a wake-up call. While she gained incredible memories that will last her a lifetime, she also became blatantly aware that her contribution was not nearly enough. It’s easy to be overwhelmed by the amount of need in our world, but doing what we can is a great place to start. We are proud of Emilee’s contributions and all our Intouchers do.

Click here to view more images from Emilee’s trip, or learn more about HOPE worldwide here.