What Are You Chasing After?

Nikki with David, at Serve to Learn.

Nikki’s teacher peered at her across the drawing board. The echo of the empty classroom amplified the austerity of his words. “You’ll never make any money doing that. You’re crazy to scrap all your plans.”

Before Nikki went to Egypt with Serve to Learn, she planned to become a fashion designer. But three weeks in the village of El Barsha changed everything for Nikki: her career plans, her faith, and her lifestyle.

“I’ve seen joy in El Barsha that I have never seen elsewhere. People are content with what they have. In the US, we are always chasing after something: career, job, money, marriage. There was this one child [David] who changed my perspective on what’s worth chasing after.”

David was “a little kid who can’t keep a smile off his face.” He was “constantly in church, constantly praying, constantly chasing after a relationship with God.” the littlest thing that Nikki gave, like a glowstick, lit up his face. “It blew my mind,” Nikki says.

After she got back to the States, Nikki stopped her career chase, and instead joined a Christian college “because I want to be formed spiritually, too.” She chose a major in Teaching English as a Second Language, and started ministering to kids in poor Florida neighborhoods through a Sidewalk Sunday School.

This month, Nikki is going back to see David again.

“I never felt closer to God than in El Barsha” Nikki says. “I expected to go teach English, but they taught me a lot more. They taught me to re-evaluate my whole life. …That’s not an experience most people get until they have to face a critical moment in their lives.”

How about you?

Come and see our work in Egypt or explore the life-changing experience of meeting your sponsored child.

About Nermien Riad

Nermien Riad founded Coptic Orphans in 1988 after volunteering for an orphanage in Cairo. When she saw that most of the children had living widowed mothers who simply couldn't afford to feed them, she gathered family and friends to sponsor children in Egypt. Today Coptic Orphans works through a network of 400+ church-based volunteers in Egypt, who visit fatherless families in their homes and make sure they get everything they need to unlock their full potential. That way, they don't have to get married off as child brides, work as 10-year old family breadwinners, or go to live at an institutional orphanage.