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Be there…, by Dina Aronfeld

There are so many people in this world who need someone–anyone–to be there. Recently, I read a story by David Sutta, a reporter for CBS4 in Miami, Florida, entitled “Field of Numbers” in The Adtime Newspaper. It was about a cemetery in South Florida where there were “no headstones or memorials or flowers–just numbers.” In this “Field of Numbers” the dead were people like you and I; they simply happened to die alone. Whether they died on the streets, inside buildings or on the shores, they had no one there to comfort them and no one later to come forward and identify their bodies. No one even noticed they were missing. How lonely is that?? David Sutta the reporter described it well when he said that “it may be one place in the world where the phrase, ‘you’re just another number'” is truly the case.

Unfortunately there are many lonely souls in this world. Anne Frank, a Holocaust Victim, once said, “How wonderful it is that nobody needs to wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” Here is your chance to help improve the world by simply improving one life at time.

Volunteer at a nursing home. Many of the elderly have families who unfortunately are too busy watching TV or going out to dinner or getting together with friends to give them a visit. Others simply don’t have families to keep in touch with.

Volunteer at a children’s hospital to read stories to kids, play games with them or simply cheer them up. A lot of children admitted in hospital for long periods of time end up alone at some point in the day or week with no visitors because either their parents had to go back to work or have to care for smaller siblings. Kids generally have difficulty understanding or accepting the fact that their parent or parents had no choice in the fact that they had to leave and they simply give into the idea that no one cares about them. These kids need to be reminded that someone does care about them and they are not alone.

Volunteer at a hospice to comfort the dying and their loved one. People generally feel uncomfortable and don’t know how to react around someone who is dying and they forget that the dying individual and their loved ones are simply in need of someone to be there. Nothing you could say or do can lessen what they are experiencing. The act being there for them is all they need.

Finally, make time for your loved ones. We are so busy with our daily activities we forget that we need to be there for our loved ones too. To Moms and Dads: stop texting, emailing or work at some point and let your kids know you love them and are there for them.

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