Empathy & Opportunities to distribute Mobility Carts in February 2019

Maker of the Mobility Cart since 1994.
Give the Gift of Mobility, Dignity, and Opportunity!
Mobility Worldwide MO-Columbia update 8/1/18: 1,102 Mobility Carts built in 2018

I recommend to all the fascinating, educational and informative book, “Strangers in Their Land,” by Arlie Russell Hochschild. In, its earlier pages the author writes about what he calls the “empathy walls.” Empathy is much more than sympathy. Sympathy says “I feel sorry for you, and I’m so glad I do not have your problem. There but for the grace of God go I.” Empathy says, “I try to put myself in your situation, to indeed walk in your shoes. I try to understand how you feel. I weep not for you but WITH you. What can I do?”

I have taken many persons, young and old, into poverty situations, and where people are marginalized and degraded. Perhaps 2/3 came back with sympathy but not empathy. “I’m so glad I live in the USA. It makes me appreciate what I have.” Those were comments from many. But there were others who changed their lifestyles and lives because of what they saw. They had empathy. In their hearts they said, “Those are my sisters and brothers. They are a part of my human family. I must find ways to help them, to share life with them.” (Our organization at the international level has begun the work of celebrating our 25th anniversary in 2019. Our Columbia shop started this mobility mission in 1994.See MW 2019 Haiti Mission Trips for details including cost of February 2019 distribution trips.)

I have found the folks in our Mobility Worldwide family, donors, shop volunteers, etc. to be empathizers. Most have never been to personally meet those who crawl upon the ground or have to be carried. Most have never met a mother who for 18 years carried a child who had polio, until she could no longer bear that burden. Most have never seen a legless man who had for 40 years been confined to his bed, arise and go out into his community. But the empathizers of MW have asked, “What does a cart cost?” and sent money. They have asked “How can I help?”, and shared their skills. There is a wall that divides sympathy from empathy. Our MW folks have torn down that wall and used its materials to build bridges. ($300 buys parts for and ships a Mobility Cart; any amount helps. Can you help?)

Dr. Raul in Honduras with Washington Overseas Mission saw this man. He picked him up and gave him a cart.

One of our presidents made history by shouting out, “Tear down that wall!”
There is a Spirit that speaks to us likewise.
Empathy- “The projection of one’s own personality into the personality of another in order to understand him/her better.” – New World Dictionary

Mel West

Mel West, Director Emeritus
DBA Mobility Worldwide MO – Columbia

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