What is your life’s purpose?
My purpose is to create understanding between people from different cultures and nationalities.

How are you living your purpose?
I am living my purpose in a few different ways. As a travel writer, I get to visit different countries in a very personal way. I share these stories of local people, their food, and the places I discover, via my blog, social media, and the outlets I write for. I make a sincere effort to understand the local culture by going to villages or smaller towns, volunteering in the community, and taking cooking classes. I feel that most travelers stay in their comfort zone and end up returning with a narrow view of the country, so I encourage them to look beyond.

Secondly, I founded a nonprofit organization, Go Eat Give, in 2011 with a mission to raise awareness of different cultures through travel, food, and community service. The organization takes small groups of travelers on volunteer and cultural tours, hosts country-themed destination dinners and speaker series. We also support grassroots organizations around the world by providing donations, volunteers, and media. When someone returns from a trip and tells me they had an “eye-opening experience,” and will now make changes in their lifestyle because of what they saw and felt, I feel that I have accomplished my mission.

Thirdly, in order to reach a younger demographic, I write a series of children’s books about a cat (my real-life pet) that travels around the world and learns about different cultures. Beato the cat is a curious character that teaches kids about healthy eating, religious tolerance, and protecting wildlife. In the present world, it is so important to raise conscious and tolerant global citizens, so I am playing a small part there.

Conducting a writing workshop at Gwinnett Literacy Camp in GA

How did you find your purpose?
When I was still in my corporate consulting job, I started traveling for fun simply because I could afford to. After a couple of years, I realized I was not learning much from staying at hotels and visiting the touristy sites, so I started interacting more with the locals and going on volunteer vacations. That’s when I realized that I had a gift for connecting with people, understanding cultures, recreating cuisines, and showing genuine care. I casually started blogging about my trips and soon had a big following of readers who wanted to travel with me or support my travels. That’s when I knew I had to quit my job and embark on a purpose-driven life.

Learning to be a Yamabushi (mountain mystic) in Japan with a 13th-generation mountain hermit

What advice do you have for purpose seekers?
When you find that you are doing something simply because you love to do it, you will know that you are living your passion. I work much harder than I did in my corporate job and earn a fraction of what I used to, but I have fun doing it and never complain. I wake up every morning wanting to do more because I know my actions will make a difference. You can find your purpose simply by doing what makes you happy and has a positive impact on others.

Once you find your purpose, be persistent! Success won’t find you overnight but if you believe in your mission and keep at it, you will define new measures for success.

Teaching English at a women’s empowerment center in Rabat, Morocco

What resources do you recommend?
Experts:
Joyce Dillon, Life Coach
Krista Reese, my favorite local food critic and author (I asked her to mentor me and she did!)
Andrew Zimmern, chef and food writer

Books:
The Geography of Bliss: One Grump’s Search for the Happiest Places in the World by Eric Weiner
Break The Pattern: Connecting To The Power Within To Create The Life You Want by Robin Bela

Blogs:
Bucket List Journey
Unencumbered Joy

Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon, Myanmar

Connect with Sucheta Rawal
Email: sucheta@goeatgive.com
Travel Website
Nonprofit Website
Facebook
Twitter @suchetarawal
Instagram @goeatgive.com

Books:
Beato Goes to Israel
Beato Goes to Indonesia
Beato Goes To Greenland

Sucheta Rawal is an award-winning food and travel writer, cooking instructor, philanthropist, and author of ‘Beato Goes To’ series of children’s books. She has traveled to 70 countries (and counting) with a mission to raise awareness of global cultures through meaningful travel, culinary explorations, and community interaction.

Sucheta was born and brought up in India. As a kid, she accompanied her social worker grandmother to volunteer at schools and shelters and realized early on how important it was to serve one’s community. Sucheta graduated from Georgia State University with a Masters in Finance and worked in investment banking, market research and human capital consulting, before realizing her true passion was learning and giving back. Her vacations to Russia and Morocco, where she volunteered at a boarding school and women’s empowerment center, inspired her to get out of the cubicle and uncover facts of life by encountering everyday people in different parts of the world. Since then, she transitioned from being a tourist to a meaningful traveler. Now she educates others how they can also forge friendships across nationalities, race, religions, and customs.

In 2011, Sucheta founded Go Eat Give, a 501(c)(3) registered non-profit with a mission to raise awareness of different cultures through travel, food, and community service. The Atlanta- based organization brings people from varied backgrounds together to enjoy authentic ethnic meals, travel meaningfully, and discuss important issues facing the world.

Sucheta started writing ‘Beato Goes To’ series to young readers about far-off places and spotlight the diversity we have on this planet, so they grow up to be informed and accepting global citizens. Sucheta uses her own personal experiences from traveling around the world to showcase facts about food, music, nature, animals, religion and more. The stories were inspired by actual kids Sucheta met and the illustrations based on places she visited.
Sucheta also works as a freelance writer, contributing to CNN, Creative Loafing Atlanta, Cuisine Noir, The Huffington Post, Khabar, and CheapOAir. She shares her experiences and inspires people by speaking at travel shows, corporations, universities, schools, clubs and nonprofit organizations around the world.

Sucheta was named ‘Georgia’s 40 Under 40 – Best and the Brightest’ by Georgia Trend Magazine (2016), ‘One of the Five Most Influential Cultural Bloggers in the World’ by the Foundation
of Florence, Italy (2012). She was a finalist for the Atlanta Press Club (2012) Award of Excellence and nominated for Caribbean Journalism Award (2015).