Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Giving Thanks by Giving Back: A BVP Scholar Blog

BVP Giving Thanks Blog Series- Part III

By Gladys Nyanti, a BVP ninth grade scholar

An expression of gratitude: that is the meaning of thanks. Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks for what you have.

Most people think of Thanksgiving as just a day to eat. There’s more to it. We have clothes on our backs, shoes on our feet, and food on our tables. Some people struggle everyday to clothe their children and make sure their appetite is up to par. With my mom being a single mom, I realize it’s not always easy to make sure that everything is done.

Being a scholar at Blackstone Valley Prep has taught me that not only should you be enthusiastic in helping others, but you should also have integrity in all the work that you do. Integrity means that when I see a problem that may not fully concern me, I still put forth my best effort to help create a resolution, even though it may be temporary. That’s why this year, I finally decided to do something that I’ve been wanting to do since I was thirteen.

Since my birthday is in November, instead of asking for gifts, I asked my fellow scholars and teachers to bring in clothes and other items that I can donate to the homeless. The name of my clothing drive is “Clothe the Cold.”  This clothing drive is to help those in need and homeless people who are not as fortunate as we are.

Some of you may be familiar with the Parable of the Prodigal Son. Raised a Catholic, I was taught this story when I was young. It's about two sons who receive their father's inheritance before he dies. One of the sons moves away and spends the money lavishly, going hungry during a famine that ends up forcing him to return home. The eldest brother stays on his father's land and saves the money. The father doesn't get upset with the younger son and still celebrates his return when he comes home. The eldest brother refuses to do the same, feeling bitter. The father reminds him that he still has his own half of the inheritance, but that his brother coming home is always a reason to celebrate and be thankful.

This story can be seen from different perspectives, but the way I see it is that many of us have much and are still ungrateful. Why is that? How is it possible for us to have so much and not appreciate what we have? This Thanksgiving, instead of being overly worried about the stuffed turkey, contemplate all the things you have.

I, for one, am thankful for all the people-- including faculty, staff and scholars-- who have made this drive possible so far by donating clothes. To further help those in need and the homeless, I will be creating care packages using the following items: socks, tissues, toothbrushes, toothpaste, and hats. Anything you can contribute, big or small, is greatly appreciated. If you are interested in donating these items or clothes, please contact the main office at 401.405.0320 or simply drop off items to the high school at 3357 Mendon Road in Cumberland. We will be collecting items up until December 5.

Thanks for giving thanks and being thankful this holiday season! Have a very Happy Thanksgiving.

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