Credit: Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest Pennsylvania
You don’t have to be a billionaire businessman to be a philanthropist. You don’t have to be a politician, and you don’t have to be born into wealth. Philanthropy is born from the desire to make a difference, and Joshua Williams was certainly born with that desire.
In 2005 Joshua Williams knew he wanted to make a difference in the world– specifically to “stomp out world hunger.” It is a difficult feat for anyone to achieve, but especially for an elementary-aged student. He wanted desperately to be a part of an organization for youths, but found that many require members to be at least sixteen. Williams wasn’t willing to wait years and years to make a difference in the lives of others.
This birthed Joshua’s Heart Foundation (JHF). The organization has no age limit, empowering young children like Joshua to get involved in changing the lives of those who need help.
“To inspire and empower youth to tackle global issues and change the world through kindness, teamwork, and determination,” is the organization’s motto.
The Miami-based organization was formed to bring meals to the starving men, women, and children across the world, but as the years have gone by and Williams has grown, so has JHF’s mission. When Williams learned just how big a problem obtaining clean water, shelter, and education can be such a massive problem for people across the world, he incorporated these initiatives into his organization.
Since its formation 14 years ago, Joshua’s Heart Foundation has raised over one million dollars to eradicate hunger, distributed over two million pounds of food, donated over 100 thousand toys, books, and clothes to children in need, and so much more. Williams’ reach has managed to extend far past the Miami-Dade area. His organization has impacted individuals in need across Florida, the nation, and even the world.
Now, Joshua Williams is a freshman in college. He may be busy with university courses and extracurricular now, but he is still an active part of the organization he developed to change the lives of others.