The Sundaytimes Sri Lanka

Do what you can

‘It is the greatest of mistakes to do nothing because you can only do a little. Do what you can’ – Sydney Smith


Sick of what you see in your wardrobe and want something new? Call over 3 of your friends who feel the same way and have a clothes exchange. Get everyone to bring good clothes they want to get rid of and then have a rifle through each others’ goodies and choose what you want to keep for yourself. You have new items for your wardrobe without having spent anything and the other clothes can go to any of the many charitable clothes appeals found around town.

Cook for too many people

Warn the boutique owner down the road that you want to give his family a meal. When Sunday lunch is being cooked, cook for two families and send the food over. Better yet, call the boutique owner and his family over to eat and chat with your own family. Learn about them all and make it a semi-regular thing. Don’t be surprised if and when they return the favour!

Visit your grandparents

If you no longer have any, spend the time you would have spent with them at an elder’s home. Call a few friends who have also lost their grandparents and make an afternoon of it. This is not a ‘charitable’ act – you are doing more good for yourself than the elders by talking to them and putting things in perspective about how much time you have on earth with your own loved ones.

Buy a student’s stationery

An Atlas Chooty is barely twenty rupees. Find an underprivileged school (there are plenty of those in Colombo itself but try and reach out somewhere else) and find a class of 20 students and buy each of them two pens, a pencil, eraser and sharpener. It will cost you the same as one meal in a cafe in Colombo and will save their parents the cost of a few days’ worth of groceries and facilitate their education.
Don’t say to yourself that because you cannot do the big gestures, there is no point doing the little things. The smallest flame fights absolute darkness. Do what you can, however you can.

This column was written by a STITCH volunteer learn more at www.stitchmovement.com

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