Winston Churchill said: "You make a living by what you get, but you make a life by what you give.” Very few people have the opportunity to learn what it means to serve others through use of their time and efforts. Recently, I met one of those people.
Her name is Maria. Name changed for privacy’s sake. She is of Chinese origin born in Singapore. After graduating from her college, one day she saw a documentary on TV about the life of poor children in a remote mountainous area of China. Maria grew up in a wealthy environment. She was shocked when she saw this documentary on TV.
That day she decided to go to that area of China she saw on TV and do some voluntary work.
She went to China. She was moved by the poor living condition of those children. They were growing up impoverished. They had lacked food, sanitation, health care, and education. Maria decided to do volunteer teaching. Like everyone else, she had to get up early every day to feed all kinds of livestock and walk a long way to school. She taught kids of 7 and 8 year old for six months.
Maria then decided that just teaching them knowledge will not improve their living condition. She decided to open up a business and make some money and use that money to help those poor children. She quit her voluntary teaching job. Came back to Singapore. Started a business.
Maria is now a successful business woman. She is financially helping those poor children of that remote mountainous area of China.
I digress. In 1908, Tamil Poet Bharathiyaar wrote a poem titled Pudhumai Penn. Translation: A Vision for the New-Age Woman. Here is a translation in English a few lines:
“Her head held high, and looking everyone in the eye,
Unafraid of anyone because of innate integrity,
Possessing assuredness born of courage of conviction,
The Modern Woman never feels inferior to any.”
In my opinion, I find Maria is an example of Bharathiyaar’s Pudhumai Penn.