Making a Difference in Happy Valley
If there’s anything anyone should know about Ava Wong, it’s that she loves her community and the people in it. Growing up in Happy Valley, she never felt deeply involved in the city until she was in middle school when she and her mom signed up for the National Charity League.
There she would participate in various philanthropic events and meetings to help people and organizations in need. There, she developed a love for giving back and volunteering and joined the Happy Valley Youth Council once in high school. Ava Wong Clackamas High School “When I was considering joining the council, I saw it as a great way for me to interact with people that are my age with similar goals in mind,” she said.
“It gives me a chance to work with fellow youth that aren’t just at my school.” After joining, Wong realized she wants more leadership roles to advocate for others and herself. “I don’t have that much power, but then when I connect with my peers in the council and people in City Hall, it gives me more mobility to make an impact.” One big area she wants to make a difference in is healthcare.
Wong’s own firsthand experiences led her to realize that significant changes could be made in the healthcare system. Through her time on the council, she saw that with potential policy changes and personal interactions, that impact could be possible not only with the greater population but also on individual lives.
“You can change a policy and not help everybody, but patient care allows you to actually meet a new person,” she said. “It gives you an intimate chance to know them and how their conditions affect them.” Through her experience in the Youth Council, she’s gained the leadership and communication skills to attain her goals of making an impact in healthcare.