Nirvan Rayamajhi, 16, of Northridge, believes in helping his community.
The Granada Hills Charter High School sophomore who, like many other teens has been idled by the coronavirus pandemic, was interested in providing meals for medical workers in the San Fernando Valley. And, with the support of friends and a couple of businesses, he’s been able to do just that.
“I was bored at home and I felt I had too much time on my hands. I couldn’t participate in regular track and field activities after school and I felt like I was trapped at home,” Rayamajhi said.
“I had been hearing about the long shifts the medical professional were putting up with, and I thought to help them do their job easier was probably the least I could do. I wanted to raise money and provide meals; but then again, if I just asked for donations, I thought I would not get much support. But if I partnered with a business, then they would also benefit from this cause.”
In April, Rayamajhi posted a video on his Facebook titled Nirvan’s Community Service, requesting his friends and family purchase a Mother’s Day gift from the online jewelry store Creatique, and the company would donate $5 from every sale.
Within three days of posting the video, Rayamajhi had raised more than $2,000. He then contacted Pita Pockets, a Mediterranean restaurant in his neighborhood, and the restaurant owners offered a heavy discount to support his cause. The owners also felt it could helped their business.
Since embarking on his “Meals for Heroes” campaign, Rayamajhi has delivered food to grateful medical staffs at the Providence Tarzana Medical Center, West Hills Hospital, Valley Presbyterian Hospital, Sherman Oaks Hospital, Mission Community Hospital, and Dignity Hospital.
He also delivered Mother’s Day gifts to the Kaiser Permanente staff, and held a Mother’s Day gift giveaway in his neighborhood.
Roland Santos, chief nursing officer from the Sherman Oaks Hospital, also expressed gratitude. “Our staff could not do what they do without the generous support of the caring community. Thank you for the thoughtful gift.”
Rayamajhi said this experience has changed his perception around helping others.
“First, I thought, I was only doing what I could, but I am encouraged to do more. Everyone is a winner,” he said.
When the hospital media reported his act of kindness, Rayamahji began receiving more responses and donations through his Facebook page and Instagram account @nirvangiveback. He said he would use the money raised to continue bringing meals to the hospitals.
Rayamahji’s thoughtfulness didn’t stop there. He began a free online tutoring club with several high school friends and started recruiting volunteers to provide free tutoring and mentoring to children whose parents are facing challenges keeping up with their kids’ online schooling. He wants to expand the free service and continue to help parents who are acclimating to the new way of learning.