Posted: June 7th, 2012 | Author: Giandra | Filed under: Thailand, Uncategorized | Tags: help, pay it forward, poverty, Thailand
Meanwhile you listen to this song imagine this. Imagine that you are sitting in a taxi on your way to fit your newly tailored cashmere suit. While you’re waiting for the light to turn green, you see an elder man showering with dirty water on the street. You feel bad for him, but don’t do anything. The next day, after your nice shopping spree at the mall, you see another elder man, barefoot on the asphalt, pushing his fruit cart in the heat of the afternoon sun. You want to do something, but again, your help is not noticed by this man.
In my opinion, people have lost their connection to people, to humanity. Today those who actually matter to us are the people that we have on Facebook, the celebrities and the people in our close circle of friendship; but what about the others? What about the people we see every day having a hard time. The janitors, the mini market clerks, the street vendors, even the security guard that looks after you? Have you ever thought of what they feel, each time they see you splurging. People walk with their head full of problems like “I don’t like this shirt” or “I am too fat” and they don’t realize that right next to them there might be someone that does not have money for medicines, someone that has only 3 shirts or even worse, someone who has not eaten for days.
We just pass by, every day without paying attention. We see them, but we don’t acknowledge them. Many people say that this is the era of connection that people are more connected than ever thanks to the internet and smartphones; however are we truly more connected? We might be more in contact but we are far from being connected to people, to the human race.
I have always lived in countries were poverty is not a mayor problem. Therefore living in Thailand has opened my mind and given me the opportunity to experience poverty in real life. To think of it as an actual problem and to realize that there must be something I can do about it. I often think that giving money to homeless won’t help them. I was even recommended by Thai to not give money to the blind or disabled people since they are part of an organized organization.
We see so much suffering through media, but it goes unnoticed since it is so far away and does not affect us, and when it does, we don’t feel that we have the resources to actually help. As mentioned in the previous blog Has the aid system failed there is so much that goes wrong with NGO’S and other organizations. Even the organizations we rely on fail to truly help. This paints a grim picture for those in need.
This picture raises many questions. How can we help, do we want to help? Have people stopped caring. And if so, what has caused this. One thing that I do have to applaud of Thailand is the way religion has helped the country. Monks take the poor off the streets and help them. Therefore, the sight of poverty is more limited and people are being helped as much as possible.
I don’t want to convince you with numbers of how many people are poor or in some other kind of need. Just watch the news or simply talk to your neighbors and you will see it every day. However, what I do want you to do is; Stand still and look around you when you go out. Take notice of who is around you and what they are going through. Ask yourself if you can help. When have you helped last? It does not always have to be money; even a simple smile can brighten the day of anyone. Making the world a better place it not only in the hands of politicians, it lies in the hand of each and every individual in this world. Just like Haley Joel Osment said in the movie Pay it forward, ‘’ When someone does you a big favor; pay it forward, don’t pay it back’’. It a simple chain of help that can change the life of many. One at a time we can make things better.
‘’If you want to make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make a change’’. Michael Jackson