“I shall pass through this world but once. Any good therefore that I can do or any kindness that I can show to any human being, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.” — Mahatma Gandhi
This thought put into these words by a man who lived what he believed challenges each and every one of us to examine our desire to give. There is never an ideal time to give, or ideal conditions. The very nature of Volunteerism is to give freely of ourselves, without thought of recompense, to aid those who are in a time of need, and incapable of aiding themselves.
We each have so much going for us, and we often forget this fact. There will always be someone else out there who has less than you. Sometimes, not out there, but closer than you think. This is the spirit and consciousness embodied by our foundation.
When we started our first initiative years ago, a suicide prevention hotline to provide whatever little help we could give to so many suffering in our city, we had no idea that we would grow to where we are at today. Now we are reaching and affecting many lives across many sectors, and still we seek to reach even more. We have so much to give. That’s another interesting thing about Volunteering; it takes you places you wouldn’t have imagined going.
The universe is wired in such a way that we are all assigned our share of difficulties. Thing is, some of us on the planet are subjected to much more than we could ever imagine, and it is in those times that we must believe that there is a oneness that unites us all, regardless of religion or race, and it is that oneness that propels us to reach out and Volunteer.
Every single humanitarian organization in existence relies on the strength of Volunteerism. Our goals would not be achievable without the sheer force and heart that volunteers provide.
As we go into a new year, ask yourself the question: what can I do, what can I give? Truth is there is no greater gift than to give of your time, your attention, your ear, your compassion. Let us make the most of an opportunity to Volunteer, for we shall not pass these ways again.
Jose Luis Gonzalez
Director and Co-Founder, Lifeline Foundation