#International Volunteers Week (2-8 December): Make a difference

The children at Compassion Home

 

Starting off with her debut article on LoyarBurok, Mable Leong shares with readers how all of us can make a difference on International Volunteers Week.

He sat on a chair along with the others who come every Saturday for the food that will be distributed. He wiped off the sweat from his brow.

There was a half empty cup of teh tarik and a plate of mixed rice sitting on his lap. Next to him is a backpack containing all of his life’s possessions, donated by other people.

I smiled a small smile and shuffled on uncomfortably. Living in a city my whole life has made me anesthetised to homelessness. But poverty of the soul, relationships, and community unnerve me… it breaks my heart.

His face with half a smile, spoke volumes without saying a word.

On the corner of YMCA KL along Jalan Tun Sambathan is a church. A simple church of simple people doing simple things in a hard world. They are mothers, fathers, children, teenagers and a few college students too. They are blue-collar and white-collar workers and some in need of a collar, if you know what I mean.

Every Saturday there is a street feeding project carried out by the church. It provides basic medical aid, hot meal and counseling to those in need. The place doesn’t have enough parking. It doesn’t have cushioned seats, just plain metal chairs. It doesn’t have a fancy cafe or a large bookstore. It doesn’t even have a fog machine or fancy lights to make worshipping inviting, mysterious and contemplative……except for love.

Every Saturday afternoon, the volunteers pile into classrooms while the parents pile into the sanctuary. The college students look around for familiar faces. They sing together; learn together; laugh together; cry together and give together.

The church at Brickfield doesn’t have much, but what they do have is love. Love for God, love for each other, and love for others.

The church that has so little, gives so much. The church with jobless attendees, gives. The church with families losing their homes, gives. The church with children in need of assurance, gives.

The small church doesn’t have much, but there are people who have less. And so they give. And give. And give.

The simple church of simple people doing simple things collected donation one Sunday morning for those in Japan who lost their jobs, their homes, their children and their lives.

Why? Because love requires action.

Everyday we’re given an opportunity to make a difference in a person’s life even for things that appear trivial to others. Your work matters because it inspires others to do the same.

Do the work. Don’t ignore it. Don’t give up. Act on it even when it feels like no one is watching.

We can’t do everything, but we can do something.

Together, bit by bit, we can make a difference and this is the good news.


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She is an "artist" who is consistently finding new answers, connections and ways to get things done. Her art is not only a painting. It is anything that is creative, passionate and personal. For her, a truly great piece of art is what resonates with the viewer. Art is the product of her emotional labour and she wants it to be a gift that changes the recipient.

Posted on 3 December 2011. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0.

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One Response to #International Volunteers Week (2-8 December): Make a difference

  1. Mama Hear Me Roar

    I like that: "We can't do everything, but we can do something." Thank you for highlighting this!