The incredible and awe-inspiring Nelson Mandela, if you didn’t already know, was an anti-apartheid activist and is the former president of South Africa. He was a great man to say the least and is quoted saying, “Overcoming poverty is not a task of charity, it is an act of justice. Like Slavery and Apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is man-made and can be overcome and eradicated by the actions of human beings. Sometimes it falls on a generation to be great. YOU can be that great generation. Let your greatness blossom.” In a similar vein, Aristotle, widely studied philosopher born 384 BC who is known as the “first teacher”, taught his followers that, “the essence of life is to serve others and do good” and Jeff Schneider, CEO and founder of an Austin-based company, resonates with this on a deep personal level. His life mission is to help others overcome adversity and whatever it may entail. Indeed, Jeff Schneider prides himself on being better not bitter.
Today in the U.S, we’re still trying to eliminate poverty, but we’re showing serious promise. According to the 2016 report conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, “The official poverty rate in 2016 was 12.7 percent, down 0.8 percentage points from 13.5 percent in 2015. This is the second consecutive annual decline in poverty. Since 2014, the poverty rate has fallen 2.1 percentage points from 14.8 percent to 12.7 percent.” The poverty rate has not only fallen, but it has continued to fall throughout the years. Jeff Schneider, philanthropist, CEO of private Austin-based company, and father, seeks to help reduce poverty in his community by volunteering and donating.
If you’re not used to volunteering, giving back may seem to take a lot out of you. One needs extra resources, time, energy, etc. But in reality, any person who is willing is able to contribute to society. It’s true: you actually don’t have to have much to help another human being. Despite that people often think you must be well off to help others, this is simply false – a social myth. Furthermore, a significant number of the world’s greatest humanitarians were poor and at some points even starving or close to death. Mother Teresa, a Catholic humanitarian and missionary, is famously quoted saying, “If you can’t feed a hundred people, feed just one.” Her quote reminds us to remember that any person can give back, he or she just has to be willing. Jeff Schneider seeks to lead by example and show others that this is possible. He hopes everyone will learn how rewarding giving back is and seeks to make the world a little brighter before he leaves it.