Currently our new student group this year has been volunteering in Roundabout for a month; it is an organization in Shunyi that sells second-handed products to raise money for the needed and receives donations for products that could be sold. Students who volunteer do an one hour session either on Wednesday or Thursday, helping out the staff members on sorting and organizing donated goods for future sell, packaging products, and displaying them in the Roundabout store.
In Roundabout, collaboration is pivotal; it is the essential quality for the whole cycle to repeat itself over and over again. Frankly it was difficult. Getting all people to reach a consensus is harder than what it sounds to be, because it was literally impossible to not to argue (at least for the Wednesday ASA group). But then, we share the same intention after all – to help the needed and to achieve self- awareness. We are still on our path to learn the life skills of working with others, like a new car on the road, and eventually we’ll get there.
Again, to be honest, when we’ve only worked at Roundabout for 4 weeks, we can’t tell what impact we are making. It seems to us that we are only playing a trifle role into the continuous charity cycle. However, what we fervently believe is that the actions of the students who had devoted their passion and time in this ongoing project in the past years have all exemplified the goodness in people, the willingness to help, and the compassionate nature of human beings; and this might bring about a change one day.
We know that our goal there is to raise money and to recycle second hand goods, but there are definitely more meanings to these seemingly simple activities. Through Roundabout, we’ve taught ourselves what we are capable of handling, and that we are taking a small step into the real society.
Update from IB CAS Students: Jenny Hwang and Vivian Lu