Home Missions Humanity Humanity News Teaching the importance of volunteerism in Tacloban City

Teaching the importance of volunteerism in Tacloban City

Sunday, 16 July 2017 11:11 AM | ARTICLE BY | Luisa Cabato
Tzu Chi volunteer Michael Siao served as the host and one of the speakers in the program for Tacloban volunteers. The assembly's aim is to refresh and inspire the hearts of the volunteers to do more good deeds to those in need. 【Photo by Luisa Cabato】

Story Highlights

  • Tzu Chi volunteers of Tacloban City on July 16 gathered at Leyte Progressive High School for a general assembly with volunteers from Manila. The activity’s aim is for the volunteers from Tacloban to refresh and expand their knowledge about the essence of volunteerism.

Cultivating good deeds in other people’s hearts results in more souls willing to lend their own time and effort for the sake of others. This is what the Tzu Chi volunteers on July 16 from Tacloban City, Leyte proved and shared in their general assembly at Leyte Progressive High School together with volunteers from Manila.

Survivors of Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) in 2013 who experienced the love and compassion of Tzu Chi in its aftermath attended the event. They are now the Tzu Chi volunteers of Tacloban City. Siao reminded the volunteers about the true mission and vision of a Tzu Chi volunteer.

“If we are guided by our conscience, we’ll know what is right from wrong. Tzu Chi practices make us more alert in every situation so we will be more discerning. We reached 66 members in Ormoc including their youth volunteers. We saw the importance of having local volunteers,” says Siao in the opening remarks.

Through a DaAi news story, the volunteers also learned about the recent earthquake at Ormoc and Tzu Chi’s response. Some of the volunteers were emotional while watching the report because they felt sad for the victims’ losses.

“I cried while watching the videos because I felt pitiful for the families that were affected by the quake and I realized that we really have to help them,” says Mita Perol, one of the attendees.

It was discussed that the quake victims need urgent reliefs and that mainstream media only shows the damages in Kananga and not the other places which were even more severely affected.

Tzu Chi social worker Chad Dizon talked about the productive use of one’s time on Earth and to making it meaningful through selflessness and serving others. Tacloban volunteers listened attentively because they fully understood what the earthquake victims were going through.

“It’s very good when you have local volunteers to respond to the people. The report about their needs comes in faster especially when local volunteers are present in the area of the disaster,” says Dizon.

Three more volunteers from Manila shared their insights brought by past disasters. The Leyte earthquake led the volunteers from all over the country, even volunteers from Taiwan, to stand as one for the sake of the victims.

“I did not expect that I will be here in Tacloban. We were actually planning to have a vacation in Bohol but as it turned out, we needed to be in Ormoc to help those who were affected by the earthquake,” shares Tzu Chi volunteer Carolina Uy-Siao.

“We are long time volunteers here in Tacloban. That is why this seminar served as a review for us. For example, the meaning of bodhisattva, we were reminded of the proper things volunteers should do and we were reminded of the teachings of Master that will serve as a guide for the things we’ll do here in Tacloban. Volunteering helps us develop our personality and become bridge that will share the teachings of Master Cheng Yen,” shares Judith Casco, one of the Tacloban volunteers.

The program brought a plethora of lessons of volunteerism. Tzu Chi Foundation will continue its goal of producing more volunteers from different parts of the country because everyone needs someone that will help them in times of need.

Last Updated: Sunday, 16 July 2017 11:11 AM

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