Apr 2010 22

“The great man is he that does not lose his child’s heart.”  (Menicus, Book IV)

Children are indeed, some of our greatest examples of love, of generosity, and of sacrifice.  Perhaps it is because life is still simple.  They don’t have to go out to work every day.  Their needs are provided for and they don’t have to think about bills and car repairs and all of the things that can weigh a person down.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful, though, to keep that child’s heart, to believe the best of every situation, to see good in people and give because it’s the right thing to do.  At Compassion Corps we’ve been blessed by children doing just that.

An elementary school in Downingtown has decided to help put a well in a desert village outside of Timbuktu.  Just recently they have had a walk-a-thon to raise funds.  Now, they could have raised money for something at their school.  Let’s face it, every school needs something….new bleachers, better equipment, expanded resources, but these kids are walking for the good of kids they’ve never met and probably never will meet.  They are walking because there are kids in Timbuktu who are thirsty today and have been thirsty for a long time.  Their moms can’t turn on a water faucet to fill up a glass for them.  Instead they walk to fetch water for their families using up 25% of their day just in this task.

In Liberia, children are exposed to danger, just walking to school. Education is the highest priority to young people after the civil war that has devastated their country, so they will walk up to 12 miles to get to a school.  There is no public school bus transportation system stopping at every hut, flashing their lights so no other car or motorcycle passes while the child gets on.  No, here it is every child for him or herself.  A motorcycle rushes past a car or truck with no visibility and a child who is walking on the side of the road (there are no such things as sidewalks in this rural area) is hit and seriously injured.

Two local schools heard about the dilemma of these children and decided to help raise the funds to purchase a used school bus for our partner school there in Nimba County, Liberia.  One little boy, after hearing about the Liberian kids, gave his tooth fairy money to help instead of using it to buy something for himself.  One school ran almost 10,000 laps in their gym classes and was able to raise over $1500 that will go a long way in helping raise the $10,000 needed to purchase this school bus.

The classes have written back and forth to one another.  One class of Liberian students wrote saying,
“We like going to school.  We like school because it has our future.  With education we will be able to help our country.”  Another class wrote, “Our class is serious about school.  We are serious for school because most of our brothers and sisters were killed during the Liberia war.”  In response, some of our American kids wrote back, “It makes our heart feel warm to know we are helping other people.  We know that we take our education for granted and forget how lucky we are.”

Kids helping kids….their generous giving has inspired us and encouraged our partners.  Now, here is the question.  How is your heart doing?  Are you still able to find that child’s heart in the midst of busyness and pressures?  Greatness lies within so don’t lose that simple, loving heart that was yours in childhood.

We’d love to have other kids’ groups get involved under your leadership.  We have curriculum for children and staff members available who love teaching kids.  And we still have a long way to go toward raising funds for our Liberia bus.  Maybe your child’s heart would like to help in that way.  Contact us at [email protected] and let us hear how you want to recapture that heart of a child that’s been buried for so long!

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