Finding Joy Through Service
The contrast between the gorgeous down town seaside of San Diego and the struggling neighbors of Vincente Gurrero was striking. About 20 people, both USANA employees and Associates, were on this bus, anxiously waiting to reach our final destination. We were going to a place very different from the one we had left, and it was evident we would have many opportunities to help the people here.
Service, giving back to those in need, is of fundamental importance to me. So, when the True Health Foundation contacted me in July to join their service trip to Mexico, I was both thrilled and instantly humbled. To have this chance to go where I could make such a large impact made me grateful beyond words.
In Vincente Gurrero, we were diligent to maximize our time with each project. The stay at the orphanage was only three short days. Our enthusiasm to make a difference drove us to purchase and pack food to deliver to the locals, spend time with the children, participate in community outreach for the children, visit a local rehabilitation center, and deliver food packs. Where we found the time to accomplish so much, I will never know, but I am thankful we did.
I especially loved to work with the children in the orphanage. An influx of thirty new kids in the two months before we arrived meant they really needed support. I visited a house of 8-10 year old girls to help them with homework to catch up in school. The girls were so bright, so happy. They were determined and worked hard on their studies. It was both fun and rewarding to help them. I loved to see their confidence grow as we encouraged them in everything they did.
To serve with the True Health Foundation was an amazing experience. I felt not only was I making the kids happier, but I was also changing, learning, and becoming happier myself.
Another of my favorite moments in Vicente Gurrero was our community outreach. Many of the neighborhoods are extremely impoverished. As part of outreach program, teachers from the orphanage visit the neighborhoods weekly to meet with the kids. The children amazed me. They are not shy at all. They are happy, friendly, and excited, and they met us with smiles when we came to spend time with them. We played games, had a short spiritual lesson and, at the end, gave them peanut butter and milk. It was so cute to see the kids lined up with their cups and spoons ready. Their shining smiles and indelible spirit are great examples of the impact consistency and small acts of kindness can have on others. Even though they only meet with the orphanage workers once a week, you could see the difference it was making in their lives. They were delighted to be there and inspired to learn.
I am forever grateful for the opportunity to serve with the True Health Foundation to help the kids in Vicente Gurrero. It was an unbelievably rewarding experience. They truly do everything in their power to make a difference in the communities they visit. During the trip, I saw many children and families who had endured significant and difficult trials, but the Foundation was a bright ray of hope amidst those circumstances. I was proud to represent them while I was serving, as they are the embodiment of compassion, love, and hope in the lives of those who need it most.
Remember, 100 percent of all donations made to the USANA True Health Foundation ALWAYS go toward changing lives across the world.