When Facebook notified me of my approaching birthday and suggested the idea of fundraising for any charity organization, I was reluctant. I checked the ideas with my husband, and since he was ok with it, I decided to create fundraising post for the Ambassadors of Faith Foundation (AFF). Facebook made the application easy. However, I started to feel nervous about it. I have always steer clear of this sort of thing especially that many innocent people had been exploited and taken advantage of in the past. In addition, the past couple of years have drained many wallets. So, I decided to hide the Fundraising post from my profile, although I had shared the requests with some Facebook friends. Today I regained my confidence to share my feelings here about why I yielded to the Fundraising idea and why I chose AFF.
Many years ago on an early morning, not too far away from the building elevator, a young man fastened his eyes on me with such intensity that I began to wonder why. I could perceive he was passing a message across to me but couldn’t immediately decode the speechless message. My spirit was troubled, and I could not take my mind off that look. What was he trying to pass across? Why was he looking at me like that though surrounded by people? Ok, I would have to look for time to reach out to him, I said to myself.
Before this time, I had been in contact with this man (let’s call him Andrew for anonymity). He became free around me and started to share some of his challenges with me. Due to some policy and ethical restrictions, I could not do much to help him immediately. At a point, I started thinking on inviting him for a dinner with my family. I believed my husband would be of a greater help to him than me. Somehow, he got fenced up by some people who also wanted to help him in their way. It became a bit challenging to reach out to him. But that day, he ignored the company and took his time to stare at me until the elevator door opened.
I must find a way to see Andrew, I made up my mind. I felt very strongly that he was saying something. I knew he was struggling with depression for a while and getting help but that type of look must not be ignored. But that hope of seeing him was dashed since Andrew killed himself days after. I was battered and tormented for a long time, especially when I remembered my last encounter with him. How could I have helped him better? What could I have done differently?… many questions flooded my heart. His burial was too torturing for me.
Many people need help and do not know where and who to turn to. Many times, we are too quick to pass the blame to others. If only we could spend a couple of minutes in their shoes. I have heard someone under influence of drug and alcohol say to me: “do what ever you want to do with me, after all nobody cares if I am alive or dead, I don’t have friends or relative, my life has always been this and that… and on and on and on.” What he did not know was that his words were like arrows piercing my heart. I wanted to scream; you are loved, you are appreciated, “…there is hope for a tree, if it is cut down, that it will sprout again, and that its tender shoots will not cease.” His words still echo in my heart till date.
Ambassadors of Faith Foundation, which is my passion outside my regular job is reaching out to women and youths who seem invisible, inferior, worthless, and hopeless. Most of the time, what they need is a sincere smile, a gentle push, assurance of God’s love, trust, prayers, listening ears, etc. For this month of January, the attention of AFF is on the youths. Some plans have been set in motion and we hope for changes in the lives of many youths. This is the reason I chose to raise Fund for Ambassadors of Faith Foundation, for my birthday. You may which to visit the website: theaffglobal.org, and explore for motivation to support this noble cause.
Thanks and God bless