What Service means to me

May 5, 2013
By , Parkland, FL
Service is something unique. It allows someone to feel their worth and pass it along to others. Service helps improve communities, groups, and people. According to Webster’s Online Dictionary, service is defined as “Work done by somebody else as a job, duty, punishment, or favor.” One person is doing a job to better another person’s life. Whether it is an act of kindness or a graduation requirement, it still involves one person helping out another. Service can put a smile on someone’s face even when they are having a bad day. In the past year alone, millions of dollars were donated to the American cancer society. This money was used to treat patients who could not pay their hospital bills, fund operations that are trying to find a cure, and help patients become healthier. All the people who donated finds did not have to expend their time and money, but they did. Just one act of service can change someone’s life for the better. In ninth grade I volunteered at a food bank that was located in a bad part of Ft. Lauderdale. As a critical and judgmental thirteen year old, I thought this was the end of the road for me and bad things were in my near future. The walls were peeling, it smelled of mold and the majority of the people were missing teeth. Unfortunately, all my peers were thinking the same thing but we tried our best to hide it out of respect for the homeless men and women. While serving their food, I started noticing the sense of community and cooperation this group had. Everyone was helping one another and there was no angst present. The ladies and gentlemen in this room were elated by a piece of bread and some cooked noodles on a plate. This solidified my purpose for being there. I was very proud to have improved one day of their life. By being in this setting, I was able to better understand these people and grasp their way of living. Throughout the night, I had small conversations with the attendees about their experiences including where they sleep, what they used to do for a living, and how they get around. They granted me the ability to walk in their shoes for an hour to understand a day in their life. Service can open your eyes to many things in this world. You can understand people that puzzle you or simply have a conversation with a homeless man. Either way, you are expanding your horizons to become a better person but at the same time, helping your community and the people who reside in it.

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