“You must believe…

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Scholars having lunch in San Fernando

“You must believe in a cause to support it.” James Rebosado Olvidares, SAS Class 1951

The conversation went round and round. “All I am asking is for you to help us out,” Jing said.

“Help you with what? I still can’t see why you are helping these kids!” James Olvidares, Class 1951, a retired baker was getting weary, tired and irritable. He believes in self-sufficiency. “You know what you are doing? Handicapping these kids.” He answered his own question. “Listen, if they want to attend SAS high school bad enough they should do something to help themselves. Simple as that,” he continued.

Jing was speechless – but only momentarily. “Mr Olvidares, have you ever been helped by another person in your life? Are you handicapped as a result of the help you received? Please give to the scholarship fund. Help us send these kids to high school at SAS. These kids have nothing. Any amount you wish to give helps.”

Mr Olvidares replied. “Look, I don’t believe in scholarships and all that goody-goody stuff. I attended SAS on my own. Nobody paid for my tuition. My family was poor; we had nothing. I was shoeless until my senior year. I missed meals and I walked to school. I worked for everything I own. Go ask somebody else to help you… somebody who believes in your cause. And oh by the way, what are their parents doing for them?”

Jing knew when to end the conversation. “Well Sir, I tried. Thanks so much for hearing us out and if you ever change your mind, here’s my card. Please give me a call.” She waved goodbye, politely leaving Mr Olvidares.

Her heart throbbed with the hurt caused by the unequivocal rejection. She thought of the scholars. Jing felt Mr Olvidares delivered his frank pronouncements harshly.

In hindsight, not all folks believe in helping others specially those who are in need. These same folks who don’t have charity toward others believe that people are poor because they are lazy and too incompetent to help themselves. They work in absolutes and are hard to convince.

On the other hand there are folks who are decent, caring, and generous. They share with others whatever they have. These folks understand that no one wants poverty as a way of life. Not a single person would miss a meal if they have food to eat. They also believe that it is terrible to waste a brilliant mind. Finally, these generous people believe that Education is Freedom. They believe in SAS Ai’s cause and mission. They support SAS Ai.


One thought on ““You must believe…

  1. Mr Olvidares feels right and justified not supporting this cause of extending help to these bright kids who are too poor to attend SAS high school. In his heart, he feels that helping this cause goes against his belief in self-sufficiency. In my humble opinion we must move on from this attitude of “to each his own,” and open up to a more community-oriented thinking and approach. Take a dragnet, for example. To catch fish with a dragnet takes more than one person pulling the net. It takes many people pulling together to bring in the catch. Apply the same principle to the cause of helping these bright kids get a good education. It takes many making donations to the scholarship fund to help these poor kids. We are unified in doing good for the sake of the many. True charity begins from the heart and the payoff comes in many ways, one of them being a more educated citizenry and literate members of the community.


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