The Unforseen Prize

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As it got closer to opening up the doors to the families who had come to St. Vincent de Paul’s kitchen to eat, the more excited I became to help them out that night. I was to be a greeter along with two other schoolmates. I prepared myself by talking out loud and practicing my lines. The doors had finally opened, and several people started to walk inside, many with little infants, waiting to eat that night’s dinner. With my overly sensitive heart, I almost shed a tear, but I controlled myself and manned up.

I soon started to guide the families to their tables, most with up to 16 members. Like little kids following their mom to the cookie jar, each family followed me and the other greeters. It was crazy to see how many families benefited from this shelter. Family after family entered and sat to wait their turn for a table. Even though I was not the one feeding them or preparing the meal, I still felt like I was helping them somehow, and it felt good. Because we did not want the families to wait for too long, we had to walk as quickly as possible which resulted in me becoming fatigued, but it was worth it.

Before we knew it, all of the tables had filled up with families wanting to have their dinner. Luckily only a few families were waiting, making it less complicated. Soon, some of the first families that had eaten left and left tables for the last of the families. Honestly, I became a little tired, for I am not used to walking so much, but it felt good that it was for a good cause. Since my duty was over, I went over to other volunteers to see what was going on and to see what job they were assigned.

I noticed that a game of bingo was being held for the adults. I walked over to find several gifts ready for any lucky winners. Gifts varied from new shiny toys, to useful gift cards. I was there only for a few minutes, and it happened. Someone had won a round of bingo! It was a lady, with dark brown hair, wearing a sweater, accompanied by her innocent son. As she walked up, she explored the options in front of her as if she were analyzing delicate species. She seemed like she was having trouble on choosing an item, but in the end, she knew what would make someone, not her, happy. She chose a brand new, shiny, red soccer ball. As the mom reached out to grab the ball, her son watched with mouth wide open and big eyes, like if had just seen an alien descend from space. Along with that amazed expression, a “Whoaaaaaa” came out of little boy’s mouth.

His reaction made me smile so big, and brought tears to my eyes. It made me realize that there are children who are not as luck as other children, and cannot experience the excitement of a new toy due to financial issues within the family. It shows how the smallest things can mean so much to someone who has not had the chance to do many things. It is the thought that counts. It inspired me to volunteer more; helping out people is one of the most beautiful feelings I could ever feel.





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