The Heart Behind a Volunteer

I first came to volunteer at the Middle Eastern Friendship Center through TRAC because it was something that I believed in but also because I thought it would look good on a resumé. Since that day about 2 years ago my perspective on the ministry and my motivation for being a part of it has changed drastically. I have come to love and appreciate the mission of TRAC and the Middle Eastern Friendship Center so much more for how it not only seeks to teach English but rather seeks to help the refugees feel like they belong and are wanted. But, most of all I have come to love and appreciate the people there. These refugees have certainly had hard lives, lives devoid of many of the rights that are often taken for granted in western cultures. And now that those people have been blessed with the opportunity to come to Canada, they have a great challenge ahead of them, finding a home. I do not mean simply finding a roof to put over their heads but a place to call home, people to help them settle into the new culture, people to let them know that they belong, and people to listen to them. All these things become a little more complicated if they are not able to speak and understand the local language and I have felt so privileged and honoured to be a part of that process for the people at Middle Eastern Friendship Center for an hour on a Saturday morning. Furthermore, I have learned a lot from the refugees in this process about endurance, patience, humility, and gratitude. In short, I do not volunteer anymore to make my CV look good, now I volunteer because of the joy that I get from it and because of the blessing that those people are to me and because of the blessing I can be to them.

- Samuel