Sunday, October 29, 2006

To tax-deductible charity organizations

This weekend I volunteered to do some work at the Refugee Council's offices in Brixton. It was part of CSV's make a difference day.

The Refugee Council helps over 30,000 refugees and asylum seekers a year. Many of these have to turn to services like these to help them apply for 'official' refugee status, housing and benefits, etc.. The children can be especially affected and the Refugee Council gives them education and entertainment until they are allowed to go to 'normal' school. It's an amazing organisation that's trying to help the lives of many of the most destitute and needy. As an interesting political aside, one of the worker's mentioned to me that they had seen less refugees than in recent years - a far different picture from that painted by the Daily Express.

Me and twenty other random volunteers spent the day on Saturday painting the children's room and reception area. They see so many people that these areas need to be cleaned and painted at least once a year. I don't want to sound like a pretentious arsehole but volunteering for something like this does make you feel better. I'd been feeling blue recently and this really helped. I spent one day of my life doing something that will helpfully make those less fortunate feel more comfortable in an alien land. And I'm proud that I've done this. It also makes you realise just how lucky you are - there are people in a far worse position than I can even begin to imagine.

I'm definately going to volunteer again in the near future. It's important to give something back to society - certainly something more than the contributions on your monthly wage slip. In other news, I went to see the Raconteurs in HMV Oxford Street last week. My review of this summer's Lowlands music festival is also up over at Rockbeatstone.

Ballad of a Thin Man

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