Charity. What is charity? When I think of charity, I have to draw from my Christian roots. In the Bible, charity is a translation of the Greek word agapē, which means “love”, and is most eloquently shown in the life, teachings, and death of Jesus Christ. It actually is more than the watered-down version of what we understand love to be today. It is the giving of oneself, without expecting anything in return. The Cambridge dictionary describes charity as "a system of giving money, food, or help free to those who are in need because they are ill, poor, or have no home". In a general sense, it is the marriage of these two definitions. However, I believe that many so-called charities today have been organized for self-promotion and as tax shelters. Think about it, most of today's charities have been started by celebrities and the super-rich, so somewhere along the way, giving or helping someone else in need without any thought of self or wealth has lost its meaning.
When we speak of charity, one can't help but recall the Catholic Saint, Mother Teresa. She is admired by millions everywhere because of her charitable work and the lives she touched. No one can deny the power of her words and actions. She once said, “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” In a nutshell, I believe that is what charity is all about, and what's even more surprising is, it doesn't take a genius or a billionaire to start a charity, anyone can do it, anytime, anywhere.
With that said, I still think that the majority of charities are a necessary and integral part of our society today, regardless of the motivation for their existence. It is my opinion, however, that, charities which help and elevate the most vulnerable in society - those who are unable to help themselves, are by far still the most critical and valuable. My lifelong goal has always been to provide shelter and a home to orphans, the children, who through no fault of their own, have to grow up in this world with no shelter, food, clothing, and the love of a parent. I would like to have my charity reach out to the outermost parts of the globe with nice, decent homes providing the safety, security and necessities for every orphan to experience what most of us have been lucky enough to experience. I want them to attend the same schools and institutions other children in their country attend, and to be given the same familial love and care that every child deserves. Regular basic medical care should also be afforded them. They should have the same opportunities to succeed and excel as other children in their neighborhood, city or town. They should never have to know that they're at a disadvantage or that they're somehow different from any other child in their school. They should be given an equal playing field to succeed at whatever they choose. Opportunities for them to be legally adopted by approved loving parents will be welcomed with open arms.
In this day and age of excess wealth, there should be no excuse for any child anywhere to be an orphan. We who can, should do our part in making this world a better place for the innocent and most vulnerable in our society. It would vastly improve the spirit and quality of our society when those of us who have enough can take care of the less fortunate.
eloquently (adv.) – in a fluent or persuasive manner
watered-down (adj.) – altered so as to be weaker in force, content, or value
admire (v) – regard with respect or warm approval
integral (adj.) – necessary to make a whole complete; essential or fundamental
excel (v) – to do very well at something
vulnerable (adj.) – in need of special care, support, or protection