For those of you who’ve been reading my entries would perhaps be aware that just a few months ago, I was involved in an accident that left me with a fractured left arm.
Today spells the 3rd month since the accident where I was given a metal plate with 6 screws in my arm as souvenir. But on a more positive note, I now have a tattoo-like scar that I carry around and the doctor has given me a clean bill of health to certify the full healing of my arm.
It’s great to hear such news cos i’d now be able to perform tasks that I previously used to face so much trouble with – even if it was just for a few short weeks of my life.
I’ve often been reminded of how grateful I should be to have been given the ability to fully utilise my bodily functions with no difficulty at all. Of course, i’m sure it’s not just me alone who’s had this reminder but how much can we really be grateful and appreciative of what we have.
Earlier today, together with my YEC members, we visited the Red Cross Home for the Disabled located at Lengkok Bahru to perform our community service.
It was definitely an eye opener for me, it being the first time I’m volunteering for the disabled.
The first part of our duty was quite simple. We were divided into two groups and separated into two floors to clean the fans and mop the floors.
The RCHD is a place which relies a lot on the voluntary services of others as it has to cut down on overheads to ensure that money for the residents staying there can be fully maximized.
Companies such as Credit Suisse is one such company who performs community service there as part of their contribution back to the community.
With the task of mopping and cleaning the fans done, next on the line was to interact with the residents through conversations or/and games before we proceeded to assist the care givers with feeding.
This was the challenging assignment.
Weeks earlier, a volunteer from RCHD had gave a talk to us and showed a video. The video had of course moved many of us close to tears if it had failed to made us cry.
It was definitely challenging for me having never before had such intimate interactions with individuals with such disabilities and I wasn’t sure of what I was permitted or prohibited from doing.
Thankfully of course, tagging along other more experienced members, I discovered that the residents were just as normal as any of us.
Some of them preferred not to play games because they wanted to watch the chinese drama serial on tv and then there were others who really just wanted to do nothing. During the short few rounds of trying to find someone to interact with, I also learnt that as the more abled-bodied person, we had to make our move to them to find out.
The first guy that I really managed to engage with was with a resident called Nazrul. Nazrul is a really special guy who loves to be touched. After every spoonful of food, he’d want someone to stroke his head.
It took 3 of us to complete this task which took about 30mins. The task was feed, stroke and wipe his mouth. It was the same process each time and you really had to wonder how long it’d take the care giver there and how long the other residents would eventually get their food since there were about 20 residents in a room!
After Nazrul, I was introduced to Christopher. Christopher is just simply amazing to have a conversation with and he has an amazing talent – the ability to tell the day on the calendar of any given year, past or present!
He also loves to eat Mee Rebus and doesn’t believe that I’m Malay. At the time when we left, he still didn’t believe I was Malay! Hahaha..
Of course, there’s more of such amazing people here that one would get to meet and like Christopher and Nazrul, the care givers too need the extra helping hand to care for them.
If you truly want to appreciate the use of your limbs and speech, I suggest you make an appointment with RCHD and come on down to lend a hand and make a difference to not just their lives, but yours as well.