Monday, 3 September 2012

Why I Lend: Compassion

Lendwithcare lender, Ia Uaro, tells us why she lends

“I shall pass this way but once
any good that I can do,
or any kindness that I can show,
let me do it now!
for I shall not pass this way again.”

A version of that was written by a thirteenth-century Courtenay ancestor, Edward, Earl of Devon. Many people love this poem. I don’t know what they do with their love, but my protagonist says love is more than just a feeling. Love is a drive, a force to act! Many hearts are moved when they see sufferings.


My maternal grandpa was born in 1900, in a very beautiful green village by a forest-covered majestic mountain. Close to the equator, it was sunny during the day; but at the village’s altitude of 6000 ft, it was very, very cold at night. Grandpa knew what cold was, because he came from a poor home.

Grandpa was an angry boy. He was way too smart for most of the people of his time. There was a school in the village, but he was forbidden to attend it. His father and uncles said he would grow up to work the fields like them, and do what they do because that’s what all the men do. Their people were strongly matriarchal. Women had been heads of the big houses for centuries. Only girls could inherit. Men? Men worked for them. Or moved away to other lands.

Seven-year-old Grandpa had to work shepherding goats and lambs when his father and uncles were at work. Grandpa soon figured lambs and goats were too stupid to run away, so he spent his time peeping through a class-room window, because he was dying to learn to read. One morning the teacher caught him, and told him he was allowed to sit in the classroom for free.

Young Grandpa was very proud. At school there was Grandma, a horrible, most annoying kid of his age who was already a landlady because her mother had died, poisoned by a rejected ex-suitor. Young Grandma used to make fun of Grandpa’s social status, telling him no matter how well he read and write, he would end up working the fields. They argued constantly. Once Grandpa’s family overheard that Grandpa had been attending school. Busted, Grandpa was banished to another mountain, far far away from home.
But nobody – nobody! – could stop Grandpa’s quest for learning. And when there’s a will, there’s a way…

Grown up, Grandpa returned to his home village, where he proceeded to send many kids to school. He was regularly seen talking to young food sellers in the market, asking them whether they’d like to study instead. If yes, he gave them scholarships. Grandpa assisted their parents financially in their business, so that these children didn’t have to work. I’ve met school principals and scientists who owe him their education.


My father was born as the son of a well-off butcher. When he was eight, my paternal grandfather adopted a brand-new religious view, and this caused the whole town to boycott his business. Restaurants and retail shops conspired to place their orders as usual, pleaded to delay the payment, but in the long run refused to pay my grandfather the money they owed him altogether, unless he give up his new beliefs. And there was no such thing like law in that town.

In short order my grandfather’s business took a nosedive. The family lost several of their properties to pay the cattle suppliers, my grandfather became very ill, and the family fell into poverty.

Dad used to reminisce of how, before going to school, he had to sell breakfast food prepared by his mother. At the age of ten, a horrible incident happened. A tiny wall lizard, common in the tropics, had the audacity to jump into the food, but his mother—who was so tired looking after her sick husband and the whole family on her own—did not see it.
Dad ended up feeling SO embarrassed when he served the lizard to his most generous customer. Right away Dad left home to get to his married sister who lived a thousand miles away. This elder sister had been ignoring Dad’s letters from home about the change in their family circumstances, because she could not believe it. Dad collapsed at her door, starving after not eating at all during his three-day bus journey, saying, “Please help Mummy!”
Dad did not live long. But in the short time I was with him, I watched how he was constantly active helping the poor by setting up small businesses for them, although he himself was a busy accountant. He did not only talk about compassion. He acted.


My son visited me last February, right after his holiday in the Philippines, horrified by the poverty he witnessed there.
“There was this woman with a son about ten-year old. They were scourging food rubbish, looking for something to eat. And people nearby just continued shopping, ignoring them! When I tried to help, my friend would not allow me to donate a lot of money, because these two would end up being robbed by the nearest crime gang.”


Many hearts are touched by news of sufferings. A large number of Australians are regular supporters of various charities, and many more jump in to help disaster-relief efforts. Compassion knows no political or religious boundaries. In this global era of ours, we can support people in need easily.
WHY I LEND via Lendwithcare

When I first heard of Lendwithcare, my first thought was, “Compassion.” My second thought was, “What a great idea!”

I had lost a large fund elsewhere last year, because I could not guide the people I lent the money to until they could stand on their own feet. I did not have the expertise. I did not have the time, nor the means to monitor the businesses. How I wish I had known LendWithCare earlier! While I still donate to others in need as gifts, I now lend via Lendwithcare, knowing my fund will continue to eliminate poverty and ease sufferings, one after another.

So how much is needed to lend?
As little as £15.
You can always add more of course. Save £1 a day, and in a fortnight you can support another project.
By, Ia Uaro, lendwithcare lender.
About Ia Uaro
Hello. I am Ia Uaro and I write real-life socio-fiction. Former teenage writer, petroleum seismologist, translator, I now do several kinds of volunteer work. Please read about my upcoming novel SYDNEY'S SONG on my website. and visit the Guestbook. You can also contact me on Facebook and Twitter.

1 comment:

  1. Your absolutely right Ia and its good to see that there are good decent people like you out there making a difference.