Because He Once Loved Us
Christmas 4 Kids
Churros 4 Change
I am very grateful for the opportunities I had to volunteer and help refugees here in Utah County. Not only did I learn a lot about refugees, it also felt good to help out.
I finished my 20 hours of service learning through the because he once loved us program. I started off my service by setting up for an event in Lehi, Utah. I was able to talk with a lot of the refugees as well. They really do seem like great people who are very humble. I put together gifts for them which involved tying candy canes to gift bags. I set up tables, chairs, and decorations as well. Although I wasn’t able to go to the actual event, I was glad I was able to help set up the event and that I contributed to making it happen.
I was also able to help set up and attend an event at Utah Valley University. It was a benefit concert for refugees. I showed up before hand to help set up the event and I helped clean up after the event was over. During the benefit concert, I learned a lot about local refugees, as they did have portions of the event that was educational. Today’s refugee crisis is the biggest since World War II, and it’s growing. Two years ago, 50 million people had been forcefully displaced from their homes by conflict and war; now there are 65.3 million. There were 3 million Syrian refugees in 2014; now there are 4.9 million. With this extreme crisis comes lost education, lost homes, and lost future. I felt so bad for these people as I was hearing about all of this. It reminded me of the line activity we did as a class about privilege. It made me feel kind of guilty about how much privileges I have and have had growing up. It made me realize that I sometimes took those privileges for granted. It also made me realize that there are so many people struggling in the world who need help. I was grateful to be educated on this topic because I think that is the first step in helping refugees.
There were other events I helped set up and cleaned up for. There was an event on Saturday, December 2nd that started at 6:30pm in Draper, Utah. I got there as early as 2pm to help set up. When the event started, my other classmates and I basically acted as chaperones. We participated in various activities with the refugees ad I had a lot of fun.
It was surprising to me how, as we look at them, little basic things were something refugees needed to be taught. On Tuesday, December 5th, a few of my classmates and I went to Salt Lake City, Utah, where we met with a few refugees to teach them how to use basic cleaning supplies. Once again, this made me realize how priviliged I actually am. I was grateful and humbled to show these refugees how to clean.
In conclusion, I would say that my service learning experience was a success. I felt like I was able to make a difference for a select few people in the world. It helped me to really open my eyes about the refugee crisis and motivated me to try to make a difference. It also felt great to help people who are in need.