THE BLOG
05/19/2014 11:46 am ET | Updated Jul 19, 2014

It Can Start With One

Who inspires you to make a difference? Over the years, I have been inspired by many people including my children, my grandkids, and the employees who work around me at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

I am also inspired by Dr. Carey Jackson, who runs the International Medicine Clinic at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. In turn, Dr. Jackson is inspired and motivated by his patients, many of whom are refugees and first-generation immigrants.

Dr. Jackson came to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Visitor Center to tell his story to StoryCorps, a national project intended to instruct and inspire people to record their narratives. Our StoryCorps project at the Visitor Center has captured the stories of people who were inspired to give back because of another individual or an experience. Dr. Jackson reflected on the experiences of a Cambodian woman who he treated for nearly two decades. As they got to know each other, she shared harrowing details about her life, while always remaining resilient and optimistic.

Dr. Jackson has made a difference in countless lives and communities, and yet this woman's story made a distinct impact in his own life, crystallizing the main objective of his work -- to treat all of his patients with compassion and dignity. Dr. Jackson's story reminds me that building a better future for all of us can start with inspiration from just one person.

Listen to Dr. Jackson's story below and consider who inspires you.

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StoryCorps is a national project intended to instruct and inspire people to record their stories in sound. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Visitor Center partnered with StoryCorps to capture the stories of people who have been inspired to give back to their community.