I have tried my best to shy away from making posts about current events the last few months, especially that I have been focusing much attention on Rod’s Life lately. However, as citizens of this country, we all have that moral obligation to speak in ways we think can contribute to the betterment of everyone and our nation in general.
I find the community pantries blossoming in many areas of the country noble. It has encouraged people to think of whatever they can donate and come out of their homes just to bring their contributions to the respective locations of the pantries. It has somehow revived that Bayanihan Spirit in us Filipinos.
But while the nobility of the intention in setting up the community pantries cannot be denied, the said pantries are not immune from criticisms left and right. In some cases, they have even generated controversies and divisions. The pantries are also prone to becoming hotspots for the spread of COVID-19 given that social distancing has not been observed in most instances with so many people lining up to get something from the pantries.
Have the organizers of these pantries taken the time to get data of how many people line up to give versus those who line up to receive? If there are more receivers than givers, are we not inviting people to a life of mendicancy? Only truthful data can give us the answers.
Just imagine the number of people lining up to get a share from those pantries. The time they have spent there could have been put to better use.
Instead of a community pantry, why don’t we set up a creativity pantry where everyone will get free training according to the abilities that they think they possess? By encouraging people to think of what gifts they possess, we help them position themselves in a position of wanting to give rather than wanting to receive.
I believe that the real way to address poverty is by way of educating the masses. Tiny improvements on a daily basis are still improvements regardless of how small.
My idea of a creativity pantry is in such a way that we can provide people with training seminars for them to rediscover their abilities and how they can put their skills and talents into action which will pave the way for them to be more competitive in the future.
A creativity pantry will also help people avoid a mentality of mendicancy. With the internet, almost everyone can share a gift or provide people with ways to increase their knowledge and skills. Let us help people shift from careers that are becoming obsolete by learning new competencies!
Creativity will bless not only the giver but also the receiver. It will open possibilities for people as they learn new things in the process.
It is understandable that the pandemic has been hurting people especially with the loss of jobs. But we need to find a solution to get ourselves out of the dire situation we are in. Let us stop pointing fingers and complaining. Only in being accountable for the state we are in and doing more to improve our lot can we truly move forward.
Do you want to avoid being a mendicant? You can because you are gifted. Let us explore possibilities that will help more people and help ourselves in return.
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Be blessed and be a blessing!