Life should be simple. Simplicity happens when we identify our priorities and focus on them. It is about allowing your values direct your choices and decisions, a belief system aimed at your goals. I believed I am blessed and this enabled me to do more. During these journeys, I found my simplicity in God. He enabled me to serve others with others, as a volunteer. This is where my time, energy and resources are devoted. Everything else is secondary.
Being part of a relevant movement. Simplicity does not mean to stay static and be comfortable. I had my first opportunity to reach out during my stay at La Salle Green Hills. I was 17 and The Lasallian Youth Commission, a student organization aimed at uplifting the lives of the poor and youth at-risk, gave me that chance. It made me realize that reality truly speaks for itself but at the same time, the problems we face will not solve themselves either. My service is driven by this thought and of the impact my actions can have on the lives of others.
I haven’t stopped since. I started out by joining similar initiatives by friends and other organizations and by December 2006, after years of volunteer work, decided to pursue my vision for marginalized children and created a non-government organization, U! Happy Events. I sought to involve more people and share my passion with them. I figured impact is generated when more people collaborate to reach a common goal. Not to mention, goals become realities with a team. This simplicity is alive when we are involved.
Seeing the world. Eight years later, with God’s grace and blessing, we have achieved some of the milestones we set out to accomplish. Our team has created over 300 events that provided support and taught values to thousands of children and their families. Thanks to the partnership of around 6,000 volunteers and our countless sponsors for our current 61 beneficiaries (other NGOs). We focused in particular to nourishment, education, cancer treatment, field trips and even celebrated birthdays with these children.
It is amazing though how much the increase of participation has grown locally and now globally for support.
Developing myself further. Helping helps you. Being a volunteer has empowered me to learn and adapt to new things. I was able to develop my leadership and communication skills, creativity, discipline and hone a servant heart in the process – an experience that has also served me well in business.
Opportunities to connect abound. Half of the people I know today I met during our events and other volunteer platforms. Meeting people who share your heart for children is a connection that I treasure.
A fun adventure. Happiness and fun encounters are very much present in reaching out. More than fulfillment, I find joy. A season of service can present a unique sort of inner and outer personal adventure. It inherently provides us a purpose to live when we go beyond ourselves.
What do you consider most important to you? It’s not about accumulating wealth. It’s touching lives, creating positive change and cultivating those relationships. It’s about God and His people. Greatness comes in small packages. Conscious acts of volunteering or serving produce opportunities wherein many people will benefit.
Many people fear the prospect of losing something important – and most fear death. But it’s not losing something nor dying that I fear the most, it’s the fear of not living. I realize how short my window of opportunity is and this spurred an idea of legacy, a legacy that will continue to serve and help countless of lives well after my passing. This is my simplicity.
I hope I was able to inspire you. I challenge you next. Take a look at our site for volunteer opportunities (www.uhappyevents.com). Whether this moves you in a distinct way or not yet, my goal is not just about joining our cause, but to have the heart to serve.