“Community Service: The Best Feeling”
Throughout middle school and high school, I have been very active in the service clubs offered at my school. I have been a member of service clubs such as Builders Club, Key Club and Anchor Club and have held positions of both historian and vice president in these clubs. While attending Daniel Morgan Middle School I was a member of the Builders Club, the middle school version of the national community service organization, Kiwanis. Our main project every year was to sponsor an AIDS Awareness Walk.
When not preparing for our annual walk in April, our club would write greeting cards to AIDS patients in our community at each meeting. In these cards we would share our name, some interests, words of encouragement and an overall “we’re thinking of you” message. We did not expect an answer or response to our card but we knew that this little task probably made a big difference to the recipient.
I was lucky enough to find this fact out first hand when I received a response from the patient who received my card.
I don’t remember the details of what was on my card but what has remained clear in my mind even three years later is the letter I received from him in return. The patient that had received my letter started out his response by thanking me for taking the time to write him. He mentioned how it was rare to receive letters and wrote that until he had read my letter, he possessed no hope for the future. However – he said that my letter encouraged him to continue living his life for he knew he was no longer alone. In closing He thanked our club for the love we had shared with him. As an eighth grader, to realize I had changed the life of someone whom I had never met was extremely powerful. From that experience I realized that even the smallest act of kindness does not go unappreciated and no one is too young to offer that congeniality.
“God bless all you kids,” were the last words in the letter and even today I can feel the raw sense of gratitude in his words. I feel very fortunate to have experienced the enormous difference one person can make. I will continue my work with service clubs like Builders Club and Key Club because I now know I have the power to help those around me.
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