It is difficult to know how to lend a helping hand, and somehow even the most heartfelt efforts feel mediocre when we are unable to see the direct impact of our good deeds. We must remember during these moments that, as Desmond Tutu once said, “It’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world”- So what was our challenge this past quarter? To make a wave in our community with little acts of good.
Marching for babies
The annual three mile March for Babies event brings together parents, friends, and relatives to join in the fight against short-term pregnancies. We were glad to participate this year, to do our little part in supporting this important cause.
The presence of young children and babies at the event was inspiring, to say the least, especially on our own team. Though Carter Wheeler was born healthy to KLR associate Stephanie Wheeler, his presence at the event, nonetheless, made us all step back and appreciate the healthy children in our own lives and the lives of those around us.
“I participated in the March for Babies event because I believe every baby deserves a fighting chance,” Wheeler says. “As a new mom, I can’t imagine life without my son. He was born on time and very healthy, but when I was 7 months pregnant, I was involved in a car accident that almost caused Carter to be born early. The doctors did everything in their power to ensure that my pregnancy would last the full nine months, and that Carter’s health would not be jeopardized. I was very lucky and it made me realize that my participation in the March for Babies event would help other babies in similar, and more difficult situations.”
Helping kids succeed
Participating (for the third year) in the annual Back-to-School Bash at Providence’s Mary Fogarty Elementary School reminded our team how important something as simple as a backpack is to an underprivileged child. In addition to the supplies we were able to provide to Family Resources, Nashoba Learning Group and Child and Family, our team members were also able to assist with carnival games at the Bash and hand out backpacks to dozens of elementary schoolers. This gave us a firsthand look at the impact of our collective efforts.
As one team member puts it,
“Even the simple outburst of “I’m so excited!!” from one little girl at the Mary Fogarty School as she tried on her new backpack and headed for the face painting booth was enough to leave a lasting impression on me, and to inspire me to find more ways to give back.”
Lending a Hug
Effective charity depends on offering a helping hand even if you feel that there are many hands already helping. You must always be willing to help, after all it may turn out that you are the only person who cares enough to help. We can never doubt the importance of even a small act of kindness, especially to a struggling child.
For children, their young minds are molded precisely by what surrounds them, and for some, that’s abuse. A cure for this kind of internal and physical pain does not exist, so how do we help? Our teddy bear collection for DayOne RI opened an opportunity for our team to offer abuse victims a “hug” from a soft stuffed animal. For abused and neglected kids, sometimes all they need is to have the comfort of a stuffed companion when they are forced to confront their abuse stories. Every child who walks through the doors of Day One receives a new teddy bear to hold while they speak with DayOne counselors.
The KLR team collectively donated 200 teddy bears and 55 journals to Day One, a donation we hope will let abused children know that there are people that care, and ways they can find hope and healing.
Every heart has the capacity for good, and we must remember that even the simplest of donations can create a ripple in our community, a wave in our country, and a change in our world.
“In every community, there is work to be done. In every nation, there are wounds to heal. In every heart, there is the power to do it”.