Life with Feeling ~Arthur Goncalves

What is passion without meaning? I can’t answer that, but passion with purpose means something, and maybe you haven’t found that passion yet but trust me you’ll find it, just like I found community service. Community service means something to me, it’s life with feeling, it’s helping others, but I think the most important thing is it’s giving other an opportunity. Over the summer I spent quite a while at cradles to crayons, and although I wasn’t able to directly help kids I knew I was giving children the opportunities I am so thankful to have. I could have spent my precious summer doing countless other things, but there was something meaningful about waking up early and driving to Boston on a warm morning, where the world is just beginning to turn, to help at a giving factory. I’ve seen poverty before, and I’ve directly helped people in need but sorting through piles of clothes only to find a few things I could ever imagine myself wearing is humbling. I remember spending a particularly hot afternoon in the factory, without any cooling system we had to rely on the breeze of Mother Nature. But I remember getting a list for a five-year-old girl named Abigail, and she needed so many things as she prepared for her first year in school. I got in the car later that day and felt so bad. I just stared out the window, thinking of why I couldn’t get Abigail a single thing she needed from her vast list. The important part of community service is the meaning of giving, but it can be so much more than that. It can be just talking to someone who’s alone or pledging $25 for a plane that is going to Somalia with food relief, and even up to going to Ghana and dedicating your life to helping others. Community service is more than just looking good on an application paper or those required hours from your school. It’s as beautiful as helping others and growing as a person because of it. It’s doing something with meaning and purpose. It’s life with feeling.

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