“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” – Winston Churchill
Giving back to the community is something I have learned to appreciate and strive to do as far as I can remember. It’s one of the many core values that I carry within me and to serve one’s community is something everyone should do. Too often we find ourselves seeking ways to only fulfill our own selfish needs. Do I blame them? Not really, I would probably point fingers at our capitalist society where we are taught the essence of “survival of the fittest.” Even then we each have the ability to take a step back from greed and consider doing something for the greater good.
Although there are many ways to volunteer, the two most important areas for me are education and the youth. The great Inspectah Deck from the Wu-Tang Clan once said “Life as a shorty shouldn’t be so rough,” a phrase I tend to live by that provides a serious thought behind it. I could relate to that phrase being that I was a kid coming up in the world with many struggles and thought it wasn’t fair. At the same time I realize that there millions of other kids who have faced similar challenges if not more than I ever encountered. It is with that in mind that I believe the heavy focus should be on the youth today who are essentially the future of tomorrow. Whether it’s spreading some joy into a kid’s life or lending a hand to help one reach their educational/career goals, you can count me in.
Each year for the past 7 years my fraternity Tau Psi Omega has proudly collaborated with the folks from “Amigos Paz y Bien” to host the annual Without Borders/Sin Fronteras community service project in Hermosillo, Mexico. Prior to the main event our members spend a couple of months fundraising and collecting toy/food donations. When the time comes both organizations head down South of the border to deliver these donations to one of the orphanages and to local civilians from low income neighborhoods.
This trip marked my 3rd visit to Hermosillo with the gentlemen of Tau Psi Omega. Of all the volunteer events that I participated in during my college career this would probably be my favorite one to partake on. I still remember when I was an undergrad serving as the community service chair for my org and this was the one event I looked forward to planning the most.
Seeing the children’s faces light up as we enter the compound with toys or spotting kids enjoying the tortas we prepared is what gets to me everytime. Years later I am proud to see where this project has gotten to as it appears to become more successful each time.
People can say why can’t we aim our resources and efforts towards the kids here in the U.S.? Thing is I believe that people from around the world deserve opportunities to be helped as well. There is no border that can stop us from reaching out to those in need. It gives me great pride that my community service based brotherhood can expand our charities on a global scale.
I would like to thank my fraternity for extending the invite out to me and fellow alum. This year was yet another great event in the books and I look forward to participating again in the years to come. Thank you to my readers and I encourage each of you to pay it forward to help make this world a better place.