Being someone who goes to places and does humanitarian work I sometimes run into Ms. (or Mr.) Negative Nancy.
Why are you doing that? There are plenty of people right here who could use a new house, why not help here?
Sigh… questions like this make me want to shake my head and walk away, cause they clearly do not get it. But alas, I am polite! I smile and if I have the patience that day and the inquiring party has it as well I will try to explain.
I will admit on a grand scale my one act of humanitarianism makes, almost no difference at all. But It does influence and gets people thinking when they hear about what my friends and I do.
Why are you doing that?
Because there is a calling in my life that has brought me to love this kind of work. My heart is filled with joy and I personally, cannot watch this place get any worse without at least trying to do something.
Our short-term projects can seem like a whirlwind events. Build the house, give out clothes, make dinner for the people you are serving, clean water projects and catch a few rays on downtime. All done over a 1 – 2 week period. Since these are short-term trips we cannot make the connections that more permanent projects get to enjoy, but one thing is for sure, I have seen quite a few people become so empowered by the short-term experience that they have vowed to do this professionally (but not glamorously!).
There are plenty of people right here who could use a new house, why not help here?
My previous answer leads to this question’s answer. Those people who were inspired enough, to have made it a life goal to help people professionally will have a greater impact over time. Time is their best friend, in that they can devote years to a cause, making a generational impact. I know a few people who have gone on a foreign trip and become inspired to work here in the hurting places of America.
And yes, I help here too! why wouldn’t I? I am not ignorant to the fact that there are people who have fallen through the cracks of our ginormous government assistance programs. There the children who are being sold into sexual slavery and elderly who have no one, children growing up in a home of drugs and the jobless of America.
Plus, I can’t do it all, and neither can you. I have to pick my causes, one cause is not greater than the other. Everyone should at least pick one! I believe that it personally helps the giver the most. I applaud everyone who has a cause, whether it be rescuing puppies from euthanasia or de-mining war zones. It is better to have one than none.
I wrote this post to give encouragement to those who have been on my side of these discussions.
I write this blog not brag, but to reveal the state of the world and the humanitarian experience overall, maybe even inspire someone to become the next not so glamorous humanitarian.
So my faithful readers… What is your cause?
One is better than none