The service I decided to attend is organized by the soccer club Pipeline. For their second year straight they are organizing during the fall every Sunday a program to help kids with different kinds of disabilities. First time being a part of this was great. In my past years I actually have worked with both soccer and kids with disabilities, therefore it was not completely new for me. Seeing these kids running around and kicking a soccer ball smiling is something very powerful and sharing their happiness is emotional. There are no boundaries for these kids and helping them out is very special.
Coming from Sweden where I have lived my whole life I do not really have any facts about people with disabilities and how they are treated here in Baltimore. However in Sweden people with disabilities have always been a bit left out and almost forgotten. But this is something that is changing and for the better. That is the feeling I have for Baltimore too. This service have only been around for a year going in for its second year, in other words it is growing. This could be seen in the amount of kids attending, since they have almost doubled the amount from last year. So doing this service can raise more awareness towards the problems people with disabilities are facing. Like Father Ignacio Ellacuría, in his 1982 convocation addressed that excellence is needed in order to solve complex social problem and it is not a easy thing to integrate people with disabilities into the community (The Service of Faith). So by doing this I hope we can do that and make them feel important and a part of society.
The one main perspective that the paper and the three poems have according to me is that they all talk about these different dilemmas that we come across in everyday life.
Starting off with Jill McDonough, Accident Mass ave, this story literally tells me what the world is doing wrong and what can be changed very easily. The norm that she tells about how in Boston you get out of the car, slam the door as hard as you can and start yelling at each other. It did not matter who the fault was or what even happened. Instead of doing this we should spread love and justice as Father Kolvenbach father propose. In the text Service in Faith, Saint Ignatius wanted love to be expressed not only in words but also in deed, which in my point of view this poem also express in the end when they choose the Jesuit way and hug it out. These Jesuit beliefs is something we did today by doing a deed and not only expressing in words about how sad it is but in instead doing something about it.
The text by Robert Frost, Mending Wall and how story about the wall and that "good fences make good neighbors" really connects to my life here in Baltimore. Me as an international student and by only been in Baltimore for a couple of months now I can see these "fences" that are put all across town. Loyola is suited in this very nice neighborhood a long way from the bad things that happen across town, but at the same time so close to it. There is almost an invisible fence and that fence does not make as better neighbors towards the less affluent areas. So instead of having this wall and that would divide even more and are dividing already, we should integrate more just how we done with this service event, which made me feel more part of Baltimore and not just the bubble that I have been experiencing before.
Frances E.W. Harper, Learning to Read, was the poem that connected the most the service I did with Pipeline Soccer Club. For me this poem tells me that their is never to late to begin. Learning how to read in this case is never to late or what I experienced today about it is never to late to start playing soccer. Looking back at this the majority of these boys and girls had never played soccer before but it did not stop them to try something new, just like how it did not stop Chloe learning how to read. It is not always easy to learn things when you are growing up in a rough environment whether it is financial or having a disability, just like Chloe and her situation. Just like the Yankee teachers tried to help Chloe how to read I will do my best to help them become better at soccer and most of all let them have fun. So by doing a Service of faith and a promotion of justice the Jesuit way that Father Kolvenbach talked about I’m sure I can achieve that. Father Kolvenbach also mentions that “Today our prime educational objective must be to form men for others; men who will live not for themselves but for God and his Christ".
By doing this community service we get the chance to help these young boys and girls so they can help other people in the future and break the "fences" that are visible around the city.
I'm sure it will also help me grow to a better person and get more perspective about the life people with disabilities live and how we could make it better and making them feel a part of the community and Baltimore as a city.