Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation

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Aug 18th
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Home Global Activities Taiwan 500 Volunteers Help Visitors at Global Gathering

500 Volunteers Help Visitors at Global Gathering

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More than 500 volunteers are helping the 1,000 members of Tzu Chi who have arrived in Taiwan this week to attend the foundation’s annual volunteer seminar. They are assisting in whatever they can – interpreting, cooking meals, cleaning and showing the guests around.

The 1,035 volunteers come from 30 countries in five continents and are attending the session which runs from June 20-24. Local volunteer Jian Nanrong seldom cooks in the kitchen at home but is helping to prepare meals for the guests. “I am like a master at home,” she said. “I rarely help out in the family kitchen.” It is hard and gruelling work to make meals for so many people. “It is very hot here,” said volunteer Zhou Meiying. “What motivates me is that these overseas volunteers do not come back often. We do not have the time to travel to so many countries. Now they all gather in Taipei, we form a bond with them through helping in the culinary team. I am very happy. It feels as if we have traveled to many countries.”

Another important task is to keep the venue spotless. The volunteers for this include even company bosses, who set aside their high status. “It is a question of hygiene,” said Lin Shuzhen. “We have to clean well, so that there is no smell. It is work that improves our mind and our body.”

Translation is another key task, to help overseas volunteers overcome the language barrier. “Teams 15 and 65 need English interpretation,” said Lin Zhengyuan. "So I first research the background of the members and how long they had been in Tzu Chi, to help us translate better.”

No matter where the volunteers come from, they are members of one big family, bringing love and warmth to everyone around them.