“How many times a day do you feel unconditionally useful without receiving anything in return?”
This is the thought that brought Vitor Belota to start making a change in the world. He once also felt like he wasn’t sufficient to make a change enough, but instead of accepting that and moving on, he did something about it.
In 2013, Vitor had a stable and normal life, he had just graduated business university and had a normal, corporate job. One day, he had the chance to hear about three people who had previously had moving exchange experiences at an AIESEC info session and something in his mind clicked. He was a happy man but that lecture and made him realize something was missing from his life and he needed a start fresh doing things that really moved and inspired him. He did some research and decided he wanted to go to Kenya. The next day he quit his job and was approved for a volunteer exchange at his local AIESEC.
He went there to teach children about maths and English and in the first few days, he was extremely impacted by the conditions and the amount of poverty in the slums he worked in. The school in which taught had a really bad infrastructure and in his second week, they relocated to one with better conditions. The only problem was, the school had absolutely no lighting and they couldn’t see anything.
That was when Vitor and an Egyptian friend decided to take the initiative and do something about it. They researched and found out about Liter of Light. This is a project that brings light to poor communities who have no electricity, solely through the usage of plastic bottles and water inserted in roofs and using the sunlight to reflect. They decided to implement that in the school they were working in and slowly word spread and they were building installing the bottles in schools all over. It was not easy, but with persistence and a little bit of support, he pulled through and was able to bring light to 3000 students all over Kenya by the end of his experience.
However, Vitor didn’t feel like his job was done just yet. As soon as he arrived back in Brazil, his home country, he started trying to develop this project there. At the time, the country had about 2,7 million people with no access to electricity so his help was really needed. He joined with people who also had the initiative of wanting to develop this project and started working on making it happen.
He succeeded and today, lots of people now have brighter days thanks to his work and those who supported and worked together with him. Vitor still has a great influence on the project, has worked and is currently working with several other organizations for change.
Litre of Light still works in Brazil and in several countries bringing light to people’s lives, one bottle at a time. Because of the will for a change of one person, thousands of lives were impacted. Therefore, yes, with some willpower and teamwork, we can make a positive impact in our society!