Report On Grace Community Volunteer Work

               It was another Saturday when all the GKC' s gathered at Uncle Sabri' s house. We were supposed to be there at 3pm bringing all the "goodies" from home such as toothpaste, toothbrushes, soap, towels and so on. These "goodies" were to be given to the street people in Kuala Lumpur. This visit was coordinated by Auntie Wati and the Grace Community which is a charitable organization under Grace Church. We started our journey at about 3:30pm from Uncle Sabri' s house. On our way there we found out that the road was blocked due to the coming NAM event. Therefore we only reached our destination at around 6pm.         

          Even though the volunteers had already started giving out packets of food to the street people, we still could pass them tissues and soaps that we brought for them. The rest of our "goodies" was collected and according to the pastor, they needed to sort them out so that everyone could get a fair share. The street people looked like any normal person on the street. They are normal, but they just don' t have a place to stay and no where and no one to turn to. I was pretty shocked for I had expected to see the street people in worse conditions. Many of them ,though not noticeable were drug addicts and were quite well dressed and mind their manners when taking the things form us. 

          After passing the food to those who came and lined up, we went along with a few other uncles with boxes of tissues, soaps and towels to a nearby overhead bridge which passes a big drain. I couldn' t believe how these drug addicts and the homeless lived! They were just sleeping and sitting around the dark, filthy, smelly and hidden corner of the big drain. According to one of the uncles, these people lived like that nearly all their lives and have no choice but to do so. They have been rejected by their friends, their family and by the public. They even use the drain water as their main supply of water. Many of these drug addicts have been captured and many too have died due to AIDS, HIV or just by trying to run away from the police and life. 

          You would never think or know who they really were until someone told you. They are well dressed and unlike many films that show skinny and horrible drug addicts, they look just like you and me, even though they are a bit on the skinny side and dirty. The way they manage actually amazes me, they clean up their " home" before they sleep and take turns to "jaga malam" in case the police comes. After passing out all the " goodies" we headed for the main office. 

          Life for these people is very difficult and the society is very harsh on them. They are known to us as " sampah masyarakat" but it isn' t really their choice to live life this way. They got into the drug ring and just could not get out. They need people to actually listen to them, to get food for them and just to show them a smile. They are humans after all, it was one silly mistake/injection that caused them their lives as well as being rejected by their own family members. This was a great experience for me as I learnt that no matter how horrible, sickly and dirty a person may be, life for them is ten times harder than it seems and just a simple smile from a total stranger like me may mean a lot to them.   

Report done by:

Jennifer Guan