The World is Not Lost

September 28, 2010
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Turn on your television, surf the Web, or talk to your friends at school. All we ever hear about are tragedies. Casualties in war, wildfires unconstrained, crime on the rise; it’s all we hear. People worry about their well-being, and their safety. Drug and Alcohol abuse is on the rise in minors. The world is, essentially, falling apart.

But all is not lost. There are still good souls out there. These are people who care about others before themselves. However, more often than not, it requires one of the above mentioned tragedies to bring this sentiment out in people, and to bring them together. This story is not a long one but it is something I feel the world as a whole could be inspired by.

Last year, as a freshman, I came into High School not knowing what to expect, both academically and socially. About half way through the year, in the winter, I got a real glimpse of what teenagers can do when united against a common enemy: cancer. A girl in one of our neighboring schools had been diagnosed with Leukemia. One night, our school was playing a third school in our area in a girls basketball game, and both teams decided to hold a donation night for her. The whole event was sponsored and made possible by the Make a Wish foundation, an organization that helps children with terminal illnesses get their last wishes to come true. In our case, the girl wanted to go on a trip to Puerto Rico, which is where she was originally from. We showed how two schools locked in battle on the basketball court can also be united together. We donated all money from selling shirts, concessions, games, auctions, and more to this girl’s dream. We “turned the night pink”, as the shirts we sold were Cancer Awareness pink, and almost every person present wore one. At the end of the game, the girl walked out to half court and stood with her mother and the leader of Make a Wish, as we tallied up and announced the totals: in one night, the two schools had raised over $10,000. The numbers totally blew me away. While we might not have paid for everything, we sure took a dent out of the family’s expenses.

Last year, another terrible tragedy befell one of our own students. A senior was involved in a car accident that left him in a coma. Students didn’t really want to talk about it all year long, but then came spring, and with it, April. April 1st, commonly known as April Fool’s Day, will now be remembered at our school as “Jarrod Day”. Each grade was assigned a color, and that grade bought a “Jarrod Day” T-shirt of their color and wore it that day. The event: Teachers vs. Seniors in a rough-and-tumble volleyball game. The colors were all different neon colors, so we had a “Bright Out”. Money from the shirt sales and concessions went to the family to help with medical costs. At half time, Jarrod’s mother came out to mid court and addressed us. She gave a tearful speech that left most of the audience crying with her. At the end of the day, we announced that we rose over $500 dollars for her son. While not much in the long run when it comes to hospital bills, we did our part.

Once again, the feeling one is left with after participating is well worth any monetary donation. To have that feeling of positive surprise when you hear the totals announced, and to spend time with other students that you might normally try to stay as far away from as possible, and be united under a common goal. If our small school in the middle of no where can accomplish this, ask yourself what a large city based company could do; what a world wide organization could do. The possibilities are endless. While the human race as a whole seems to be falling apart, the hearts and souls of some continue to grow, and they take others along with them.

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This article has 4 comments. Post your own now!

whitkostdnt10 said...
Oct. 7, 2010 at 1:30 pm
I agree, Chels. It really is amazing.  A tragedy always brings us together.  It helps, also, that we are a caring, small town high school.  I am happy that we can all get together and help out. :)
whitkostdnt10 said...
Oct. 7, 2010 at 1:29 pm
I will never forget that basketball game. I cant believe we raised that much.
whitkostdnt10 said...
Oct. 6, 2010 at 1:39 pm
It's amazing how everyone can't seem to get along, but when tragedy strikes, the first thing we do is turn to each other...  We need each other, we just can't see that until we are forced to rely on others... and it is amazing what this school did for these people...  your right, there is still hope for humanity...-choirchick2013
whitkostdnt10 replied...
Oct. 7, 2010 at 1:40 pm
I know it's nice, but depressing how it takes tragedy to bring us together.
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