Thursday, February 28, 2008

Humanitarian Center

Last Tuesday I toured our local LDS Humanitarian Center where the goal is to help people world wide during disasters like earth quakes, hurricanes and floods, and with their every day needs. Our prophet Pres. Hinckley explains why...“All about us there are many who are in need of help and who are deserving of rescue. Our mission in life, as followers of the Lord Jesus Christ, must be a mission of saving. There are the homeless, the hungry, the destitute.”

Included in these projects are clean water treatment in Africa and South America, vision treatment, wheelchairs, neonatal resuscitation training, medical training and equipment, measles vaccinations, emergency response to diasasters for food, clothing and shelter needs to name just a few. All of it free to the recipients. In the last 20 years, the LDS Church has donated 900 million dollars of aid to 163 different countries. (Photos are from my time in Brazil in 1970 where we saw lots of poverty and disease. I accompanied my husband to study the dance of Brazil. We lived in Bahia with our family for about nine months most of it in culture shock.)


Women of our church are busily engaged in making and donating items for newborn kits, hygiene kits and making toys and quilts to give away. Pres. Hinckley said..."I want every child in the world to have a toy." What a wonderful goal and how fun to help in accomplishing it by giving some of our time and resources either money donations or materials to a local Deseret Industries store for recycling. We were able during our short 2-3 hrs of work at the Humanitarian Center to make almost 1000 infant caps and it felt so good to be of use. What volunteer work have you done lately and how does it make you feel?

1 comment:

mom/caryn said...

Okay... I've thought about this. And here I go again... of on some philosophical tangent.

I think we too often beat ourselves up for not doing more volunteer work because we don't knit hats, make quilts, stuff hygiene bags, etc.

Let's set doing the hospital candy striper thing aside since most of us don't do that. Let's think of other smaller ways that we all volunteer our services to others without even realizing that we're doing it.

How often have we stopped making dinner to listen to a friend who called with the need to talk? Maybe we just took a minute to jot a quick note, or comment on someone's little piece of the web to encourage them, help them feel they have something of value to offer. Have we watched someone's child while they ran an errand? Maybe fed their dog or checked their mail while they were away for a day or two? How about shoveling a walk or giving them a lift when their car's in the shop?
Just little acts of service and friendship.

Isn't that volunteering our time and energy for the benefit of another?

How does it feel? Natural... like we haven't done much really. Like we should be at the stake center sewing nighties to send to Bulgaria. But... those tiny acts of day to day living build our capacity for compassion and are as acceptable in the eyes of our Father as flying to Peru to take medical supplies and clothing to orphanages.

And anytime you make someone else smile... it feels downright great!