UWCSEA's local service programme provides students across all grades with opportunities to learn about others and the society we live in. Through their participation, students are encouraged to reflect on their own experiences, attitudes and actions. Grade 5 students on East Campus work with Willing Hearts as their local service partner. Student Amelia writes about her recent visit to Willing Hearts with her class.
A 'willing heart,' to me, means giving your passion to lend a helping hand, even when no one tells you to. You do it because you know it’s right. On Friday, 30 September, 23 'willing hearts' from Grade 5 got off the bus ready to help!
Willing Hearts is a soup kitchen providing food for people that can’t afford food, and might otherwise starve. As a class, we all worked to earn money to buy packets of rice and proudly carried them inside the kitchen.
As I walked around the kitchen, I saw many more people, chopping vegetables, cooking in large pans, and everyone had a smile on their face. It made me smile too, watching everyone work together to create meals for all the people out there. We walked into a room, and we were immediately greeted by kind people. That’s when I realised we were not the only ones with willing hearts there! Dozens of people had offered their willing hearts and volunteered. It impressed me how so many people were so selfless and volunteering to help. They didn’t do it for money or anything, they did it because they wanted to, and that inspired me a lot.
This was our first visit, and we were going to put stickers onto the food packages for the people there. As I stuck on stickers and piled the packages up with a group of classmates, I imagined the smiles that were going to be on the people’s faces when they received their meals. The more I imagined this, the greater the feeling of happiness sunk in. Not only the happiness of the people who were going to receive these meals, but also the happiness from myself. I knew the guests were waiting so long every day for their meals, and I realised how lucky I was to have food so easily every day. Some people might not be as fortunate as I am, and that inspired me and strengthened my willingness to help in every visit.
On the ride back home, I thought of all the things that happened during the visit. I learned a lot, and so did everyone else. We all knew what we were working for, and kept on going to provide meals for them. It was like the more I filled their buckets, the more my own bucket got filled too. Today our whole class helped out, and I learned that service becomes a lot more meaningful when you do it out of your own willingness, like all those other people that I saw volunteering today. I can’t wait for my next visit when I can help out again!