April 9, 2015
Karyn, Year 13, Century Park Campus
Ever since I moved to Shanghai and started school at YCIS, charity became an important word in my vocabulary. Included as part of the schools motto, YCIS promotes learning through “love and charity”, and my passion for helping others has been cultivated during my time here.
When I first started at YCIS I was in Year 5 and still grasping the concept of charity and what it really encompassed. To me, at the time, it was merely a part of the many events and bake sales that the school hosted in addition to the fun and games during our annual Charity Week. It was more about the fun involved in making money than truly understanding where the funds went and the difference we were making.
This completely changed when I joined the Student Council. I then became part of the organising committee for many of these events, and I had several opportunities to visit the children we helped with the organisation, Heart to Heart. When I saw the smiles on the children’s faces fresh from the operation we had helped to make possible, as well as the relief on their parents’ faces, that was when I started to understand the real difference that charity can make. This was further enhanced by my Education Outside of the Classroom (EOTC) trip to Sichuan Province in Year 11, where I spent a week at a YCIS Seeds of Hope School for local children. There, I learnt the individual stories of the young children, some of whom had lost their parents or their homes during the terrible earthquake, or others who had migrant parents whom they only saw once a year. Their stories touched a nerve, and still today, I remember the names of the children and their smiling faces, as they left such a deep imprint on my heart. In fact, it was this trip that sparked my passion for charity and helping others so much that I ensured that my CAS project, which I called “The Shoebox Appeal”, revolved around the community working together to provide care packages of a range of key items for young migrant children.
The passion I have developed for charity has also helped me to decide to pursue Law at university because I want to be able to provide a voice for the disenfranchised and to be able to help people in need on a bigger scale. This is a dream that I hope to achieve, and I hope that the passion for helping others that was cultivated during my time at YCIS will help spur me forwards to finding more and more ways to help others.