Every Sunday morning I volunteer my time to cook up 250 or so pancakes to feed my friends who struggle every day to survive in a world that costs so much to live in. We have a dedicated group of volunteers who give their free time on these Sunday mornings and the mood at the centre is very jovial. I love this cause and it has given me a purpose to help others, help themselves. The place where I volunteer is called The Humanity Project and as of today, we are homeless; just like the many friends we serve. The has lease expired on our current building and unfortunately fundraising to buy the building had come up short. The building has been sold and will be ultimately torn down to make way for new development. We have for all intents and purposes been evicted. Is it fair? Who cares! When has life ever been fair?
I was fortunate to be able to help prepare the last meal that was served at the current center and of course it was moving day. Have you ever had the chance to serve 120 of your friends for lunch on the moving day of your home? Naa, I didn’t think so. Cooking for your family is a big enough chore when you are in the process of switching homes. On this Sunday though, we were given that task. When we walked into our kitchen to begin our preparations, the room was a complete disaster! Volunteers had been working tirelessly all weekend moving our stuff into storage and of course, the place was in a state of -shall we say- flux. The floor was a mess, there were boxes on all of our working counters and unfortunately, the sink was still filled with dirty dishes from the day before. If we would have turned around and walked out, nobody would have blamed us; but we didn’t. Our resolve to feed our friends was too great, we would have to make do with what we have in front of us. Our friends will get served today. There was zero time to blame.
Our mindset is a huge factor in determining our successes in life. Our Sunday morning group of volunteers has a rock solid mindset that is focused on our friends who rely on the delivery of a quality meal. This is more important than blame, there is no time or energy for that. We could have stewed on the state of our kitchen. We could have the finger pointed at this person or that person. We could have become miserable and mean. But no… our mindset was to make the best of the situation and find that opportunity to grow. And grow we did. We delivered with the love, dignity and respect that our less fortunate friends deserve. We did it!
One of the most humbling observations that I have made when I help serve our friends that warm meal every Sunday is the mindset that each of them has. I rarely ever hear a complaint, a blame or a jeer. I hear heart-felt thank you’s and laughter. The people that we serve have been beaten down by our society and yet they don’t complain. All they want is that love, dignity and respect that we give them.
As we seek out a new home for The Humanity Project, we must follow the lead set out by the very people we serve. Now is not a time for blame, complaint and jeering. Now is the time to be extra thankful for the support we continue to receive and get to work finding a solution to help our problem. Relying on others (mainly the various levels of government) to help fix our woes would be an insult to the thousands of people who have reached out their hands to help us. If there is ever a time to rally around The Humanity Project’s motto, now is that time: we must treat everyone with love, dignity and respect… it is impossible to do that with blame.