Compassion is contagious. Every volunteer has far-reaching effects, changing lives in big and small ways. As volunteers improve the living conditions of families, they look out to the surrounding community, offer support, and build unity of purpose. Once they witness the impact they’ve made, gratification swells and compels them to serve again. The key reality is every action is multiplied.
Families without adequate housing lack peace of mind and dignity. When volunteers repair and restore their homes, it relieves financial burdens, allows for emotional rest, and empowers them to look beyond their own problems to make a difference in those around them.
When fires swept through Bastrop, TX destroying 1,673 homes, it took with it hope and livelihoods. Many people around the nation sent money to city officials and ministries, but hands-on volunteers were a necessity. During the following spring break, university students and skilled individuals teamed up with Building Compassion with energy and enthusiasm to assist families with a myriad of needs.
Five months later, some families were living in FEMA trailers without steps and skirting around the base of their homes. Fences were needed, barns had been destroyed and businesses were lost. Volunteers stepped in to provide for these needs. The city of Bastrop’s ministerial alliance identified 27 families in need and gave Building Compassion over $100,000 to use for the projects. Because much of the needed materials were donated and volunteers did away with the need to hire workers, only about $25,000 was required; the remainder was returned to the alliance to be used elsewhere.
Through community comes stability and strength. With this in mind, volunteers have helped initiate unity and purpose in neighborhoods through free public events and service. In the past this has looked like:
Free sports camps for impoverished children.
Distribution of food to underprivileged families.
Provision of residential junk removal.
Improvement of families’ environmental conditions.
Free adolescent community events.
Adult volunteers to aid a children’s summer program.
Sorted donations for children’s homes.
Storage organization for elderly individuals.
Revitalization of an abandoned community center.
Redecorated children’s Sunday school classrooms.