Thursday, August 23, 2012

Philanthropic Vegetable Seller

Chen Shu-Chu
(Image fro

Charity is not only for the rich people. It’s about helping someone in need, even in a small way. I came across this story that helps to restore some faith in humanity, in a time when it’s rapidly receding.

Chen Shu-Chu is a Taiwanese vegetable vendor, and over the years, she has given over 10 million Taiwanese Dollars to several various children’s charities. Her achievements were first highlighted back in 2010, but came into the limelight again because she has been awarded The Ramon Magsaysay Award, in recognition of her work.

Unlike other big time donors, she is not a millionaire, or even a famous personality. She sells vegetable from a little stall in the local market. Yet, she has managed to give more to society than most of us. The key is her frugality and generosity. Material things are not important to her. Food and a place to sleep is all that she needs. Everything else is a luxury to her.

In 2010, she was honored by the “Forbes” magazine as one of the 48 outstanding philanthropists from the Asia-Pacific region. “TIME” magazine also included her in their 100 influential people list, and this year, she has been honored with the Ramon Magsaysay Award.

In a world filled with consumerism and lives driven towards materialistic possessions, people always want more and more. It doesn’t matter whether we need it or not. In such an environment, Chen Shu-Chu is a role model for all of us.

In Chen’s own words – “I do not place great importance on money. When I donate to help others, I feel at peace and happy, and I can sleep well at night.”

It’s not about giving up all your materialistic possessions. You should be a saint if you do. We need things to make our lives a little bit easy. But keep in mind that the world doesn’t revolve around you. Give some consideration to the people and society in which you live in.

“My philosophy in life is simple: If doing something makes you worried, then it must be a wrong thing. If it makes you happy, then you must have done the right thing. What others say is not important,” says Chen. She is content with what she has and feels that as long as she “lives a life she wishes for and does the things she wants, that is good enough”.

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