Starfish Story

COAR’s mission is to inspire students to serve their community. Here is a story that exemplifies the impact that service can have on others:

Starfish Story

A young man is walking beside the ocean and sees thousands and thousands of starfish that have washed ashore. Further along, he sees an old man, walking slowly and stooping often, picking up one starfish after another and tossing each one gently into the ocean.

“Why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?” he asks.starfish

“Because the sun is up and the tide is going out and if I don’t throw them further in, they will die.”

“But, old man, don’t you realize there are miles and miles of beach and starfish all along it! You can’t possibly save them all; you can’t even save one tenth of them. In fact, even if you work all day, your efforts won’t make any difference at all.”

The old man listened calmly and then bent down to pick up another starfish and threw it into the sea. “It made a difference to that one.”

-Author Unknown