Helping a Community

Briana - Cypress, Texas
Entered on November 10, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
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I believe in doing good to all men.

When hurricane Rita battered the Texas coast in 2005, many homes were destroyed and families were left homeless with no food or shelter. With my church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, being strong supporters of humanitarian aid, I went with my family and some other people down to Beaumont, Texas, an area that was less fortunate than ours and suffered more damage, to help pass out food and supplies to the needy citizens. We left really early in the morning when the sun was not up yet and drove down to Beaumont. Being only about 12 or 13, I didn’t really grasp how bad the hurricane had hit yet. All I knew was that I got out of school a couple days and all that happened to us was the power went out for a couple of hours and it was really windy outside. But other then that, my home suffered little to no damage, and my family was all alive and well.

On the drive up, I witnessed just how bad the hurricane had hit. There were billboards bent down touching the ground, trees that had once towered over the city were now strewn across the ground, and huge glass windows in the stores were shattered leaving a tremendous amount of cleaning up to be done. It took me out of my little bubble of a perfect life and showed me reality. When we arrived, we were assigned things to give out to the people who drove by seeking assistance, stuff like toothpaste, shampoo, ice, food, soap, etc. It was hard not to complain about the ever-present sun beating down on our backs and the suffocating humidity that cloaked us, but the feeling I got as I helped the people out surpassed all of my complaints. The people that came were so thankful. They just couldn’t believe how generous we were to give up our time to come and help them.

That day, I discovered a new feeling, the feeling you get when you know that you helped someone out in their time of great need, no matter what the color of their skin, or their situation. I don’t know who benefited more that day, the people who received the help that they needed or me because I finally got a sense of what it felt like to do something nice for someone in need. I finally realized just how important it is too help everyone and not just worry about yourself.