Wednesday, July 18, 2007

One Toilet at a Time

Just a note to share the marvellous work being done by some young people, near and dear to my heart, whom I and my children have been blessed with knowing since they were babies. The last two winters, they visited Cambodia with their parents. Naomi and Jordan came back and, along with others from the trip, and created this website about what they learned and experienced: Doors 2 Cambodia.

One project that come out of it was Naomi's One Toilet at a Time. Read it all, but here are some of Naomi's words:


Toilets are something that people take for granted. Do you realize how many times a day you use the restroom? Some people use the restroom as a place to get away, to take a couple of seconds to catch their breath. Well, imagine not having a place to relieve yourself during the day. Many people don’t have sanitary bathrooms, especially in third world countries. Cambodia is one of those countries where, in some cases, the field is the bathroom for many people. When I discovered this, I knew that I wanted to help out in some way, so I created the project, “One Toilet at a Time.”

. . . .


During January of 2006, I had the chance of a lifetime: I was able to be apart of a delegation that went to Cambodia through RCTC. The purpose of the delegation was to see if it was possible to bring students back to Cambodia as a service learning class. I had a blast being with the people, working and learning. We did many things, such as visiting Angkor Watt, touring the cities and visiting schools. My favorite part of the trip was traveling to some of the provinces to visit the rural schools. While we were at the schools, our group of around 6 people (plus a monk or two) would talk with the teachers, play games with the students, and we would ask the school as a whole how we could help them to succeed. Some of the students asked for school supplies, but more often than not, the young women would ask for sanitary bathrooms. When I heard this, my brain started to turn. We went on to ask other questions, but the subject of bathrooms kept coming up.

. . . .


When I returned home from Cambodia for the second time, I realized that things didn’t have to stop just because I already accomplished one task. The way that I thought about it was this: What if everyone worked for a cause and volunteered some of their time? I also thought of what could happen if people like you spent maybe 2-6 hours each month volunteering for some cause. Volunteering is not necessarily spending money, but instead spending some of your time. Even participating and volunteering in your local town could make a difference in someone’s life or living style! I ask you not to give up your life to try and change the world, but to instead help out and make a difference in one person’s life by starting out small. Eventually, you will end up with something bigger then when you started. You can continue the vibe by picking up the phone and just talking to your elderly neighbor, or better yet- you can make even more the difference in your elderly neighbor’s life by brining her or him cookies. If a 15 year old girl, with the help of others, can raise $3,700, just think what a bunch of adults and children can do together, if everyone decided to work together to make a difference!

1 comment:

Grandmère Mimi said...

Klady, very wise words from your friends.