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Arrival and registration of volunteers.
Visit of Cisco Systems' Corporate Volunteers
It was a proud moment for Eden Handicap Service Centre (EHSC) on October 11, 2007 when more than 100 persons from eight different countries under the CISCO SYSTEMS' Corporate Volunteers Program thronged EHSC's various units to "serve" as Volunteers. Indeed EHSC felt honored to have an international community recognizing our efforts and services to people with disabilities.
Truly LOVE was the motivating spark that ignited the CISCO Volunteers' spirit to discard their status, rank or positions and to don that 'apron of love' to work and fellowship with the staff, trainees and children with various disabilities of the different units of EHSC. Indeed LOVE transcends all barriers of nationality, religion and culture as envisaged by the make up of the CISCO Volunteers from eight different countries.
"It was a humbling experience for us as we go about unloading, sorting out and packing the recyclables," commented one of the Volunteers. She added that now she knows what is really a styrofoam lunch box after this experience at the Recycling Unit.. Another remarked that she felt so touched at the sight of the children at the Children's Hostel. "The children with various disabilities may not understand us but they taught us something which we would never have imagined. They showed us the language of love that when each child with a different disability would readily assist or help another child of a different disability whether in play or duty." People with disabilities perform their tasks slower as compared to able-bodied people, who may find the tasks boring like pasting stamps, inserting newsletters into envelopes or pasting address slips as evidenced in the Administration Unit. They (the disabled) are thankful that they can still be employed, respected, feel useful and able to contribute to society which many able-bodied people would not want to do such tasks. There were some set backs initially when the Volunteers did not receive any positive response from the trainees when the Volunteers visited the Trainees' Hostel. The trainees of various disabilities finally relented at the display of the Volunteers' persistent friendliness and eventually fellowshipped with them. At the Handicraft counter, it was swarmed by crowds of Volunteers and we could see the joy of the staff manning the counter. The Volunteers were apparently attracted and impressed by the quality of workmanship of the variety of handicraft items displayed for sale. The handicraft items were innovatively created and painstakingly hand crafted by human hands by the Handicraft Unit's staff with different disabilities. They (the staff) felt so honored and encouraged by the many enquiries of their 'masterpieces' that coupled with the brisk sales.
The visit of CISCO Volunteers has been an enriching experience for both parties of which we could learn from one another despite the short time we could spend together. A BIG THANK YOU to CISCO SYSTEMS CORPORATE VOLUNTEERS PROGRAM, whose support and encouragement will further motivate and give us the confidence to boldly traverse the globe to bring fruition, a new kind of volunteerism to people with disabilities, that fuses the best of East and West.
Children with disabilities having great fun with the volunteers
Friendly volunteers fellowshipping with the trainees
Humble experience at the recycling unit.
Impressed by the quality of workmanship of the variety of handicrafts made by the disabled people
Volunteers receiving a token of appreciation
Volunteers visiting the Penang Goverment Welfare Office
Volunteers in the administration office
Group photo with the volunteers from Cisco Systems