Pencils of Promise

This year, I have taken a step back on volunteering as I have realised that I feel quite scatterbrained as to where my energy and time should be devoted. I realise that I want to make a difference, but I am not sure where and how I should approach it. It need not be a very bold movement, but neither should it be so inconspicuous that it doesn’t help anyone (would be a total waste of time+energy then!). As I scrolled through my YouTube feed, I came across bubzvlog’s video of her visiting the school that she and her fans/friends have fundraised to build. 

It was quite an amazing thing, to be able to witness such a blessing through the video. I am not there physically, but I realised how much (or little) money is required to actually provide good, basic education that can sustain and break individuals families communities out of poverty. And the fact that the schools are built in rural areas, which basically equates to really inaccessible places for anyone to send supplies/manpower, shows that everyone has a somewhat a fair chance to education with very minimal support. :O

Of course it would require support from the general public, to actually know that not everyone is lucky like you and I to be reading this blog post right now. Some don’t even know computer exists, or the Internet, for that matter especially in the technological age. Or even the basic things, like being literate. Imagine you being illiterate in the place where you’re from. How different would life be then?

Literacy is a lifeskill. The greatest error that we can do is undermining its importance.

I have always known that the world is unfair and unkind. Perhaps not all can and will have access to the technology that the minority of the world has, but at least education should be accessible… so that they can fend for themselves and communicate in a dynamic and changing world. We’ve heard about HIV/AIDS, Ebola, natural disasters and more… and they are very real problems. If these people who are far away from us physically and do not have the abilities to understand solutions to these problems, are we just going to neglect them? Are we just ignoring the fact that they are our brothers and sisters as well?

Being born in a country where tap water is clean, infrastructure is state-of-the-art and education is arguably one of the “best” in the world, I don’t see why I should not try and give what I can to people who do not have what I have. It’s just feels so wrong to think that I have been brought up just to make money after I graduate for the rest of my life. What do I do with the money then?

I’ve decided to pledge an undisclosed amount of money every month to Pencils of Promise. Many might be skeptical with the term “nonprofit organisation” as the funds can be allocated to areas that we might not necessarily want to support and that clear financial papers are not being provided at times. However, while PoP is built with a business frame, all donations are solely directed towards the mission of PoP, which is everything to do with the school – training teachers, teaching students, improving the quality of education and also building schools. They impact areas such as Ghana and Laos, and I believe that they are doing a really good job. It’ll be cool to watch and keep track of the progress, and I feel that the time and effort invested in this mission will go a very very long way.

p.s. I have read through most of the pages, except for the financial papers, and I realise that for now, I want to support the education sector in any way I can.

I wish I could do more, but I realise that I more need time and energy to think through the target age group I should focus on. For now, a monthly donation is what I can afford and insya’Allah, I will be able to do more in the future 🙂


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