From the White House more than 25 years ago, President George H. W. Bush gave voice and direction to a movement that’s steadily grown ever since — changing countless lives in communities across the country and around the world. No president in American history has advanced with greater clarity and consistency this belief: that voluntary action to help others is inseparable from human freedom and America’s pursuit of what is right and good. Each year, Points of Light honors individuals who embody the vision of “a thousand points of light” that President Bush first invoked during his acceptance speech at the 1988 Republican National Convention. Their extraordinary contributions to volunteering and service have made their communities, and the world, a better place.
Wedding planner Kat Creech was watching the development to Hurricane Harvey closely, worried about an upcoming wedding scheduled for Labor Day weekend. With doubts about the weather, Kat and the couple, Sarah Samad and Mohsin Karedia, decided to postpone – knowing that they wouldn’t truly enjoy their wedding while so many people were suffering through the impact of the storm. And at Kat’s suggestion, Sarah and Mohsin invited members of their wedding party, family and friends to instead come together to volunteer in support of families impacted by the flood.
After Hurricane Harvey hit Texas, Leah Halbina reached out to friends in the Houston area to see how she could help. When she found out about Sketch City, an open, nonprofit community of technology advocates and civic hackers that used technology to organize rescue efforts, help victims locate their nearest shelter and satisfy other pressing needs, she jumped in to help. Shortly after, Leah had to use the same technology in her home state of Florida as Hurricane Irma approached and made landfall.