When I was a child my mother used to make us pull out all our toys and choose some that we didn’t play with anymore. She’d make us go across the road to the home for unmarried mothers and donate our toys.
Sometimes I didn’t want to, but Mum told us, ‘Other people aren’t as well-off as you.’
We weren’t ‘well-off’ in fact, my parents were proud working-class, union-supporting battlers. (Their own words) But, I was brought up with a sense of having to do something for those less fortunate than me.
That’s where my social justice propensity began.
Today, an issue confronts me. An issue that means going beyond cleaning out my cupboards and donating goods.
I watch the news about refugees and the flood of displaced people who are suffering. I see the children, so many children, and wonder—who is helping them? On any given night, there are over 35,000 refugee children on their own in Europe, having lost their parents, temporarily or forever. Children are sick and starving and thousands of people are trapped on closed borders, living in horrific conditions. What can I do? Am I doing enough?
I can give. I can sign petitions. I can pray and care. But is it enough?
The idea of buying more for myself sometimes sickens me, but I still do it.
I throw out food and others starve.
I buy new clothes when others are naked.
I buy a new car when others are running to safety.
I have more than enough.
What about all the others? Do they have enough?
How do I sleep at night knowing children are adrift, alone in the world without protection?
Maybe we need to gather our enough and add it to each other’s enough and make a difference.
The Compassion Collective is an example of people saying, ‘Enough is enough.’ They say that those far away are our children too. If it was our child what would we do?
For these are all our children, we will all profit by or pay for what they become. James Baldwin
Closer to home, there are children suffering poverty, abuse, neglect, rejection, inequality in education and so much more. These are all our children.
So, my challenge today is: Am I doing enough to make sure others have enough?