It’s the end of the year and we’re finally approaching Christmas, the season to be jolly. Unfortunately, the last few weeks have been flooded with news of natural disasters.

Typhoon Haiyan which struck the Philippines, for one, took away so many lives and left its survivors with nothing much but the remains of this tragedy. Closer to home, many Malaysian citizens have been forced to be evacuated to higher ground due to the floods again. These victims have not only lost loved ones, but also their homes and even businesses, for some.

It’s sad that there’s nothing they can do about it and that’s exactly why we should come in. It’s the season of giving after all.

So what can we, the luckier ones, do? Well, we can always donate necessities and financial aid to these victims. But an even better way to help out is by volunteering. Plus, manpower is a dire necessity during such tragedy to help victims on-location and help gather essential goods for them in other parts of the country.

I strongly recommend youths, especially those who are on school break, to take the time to lend a hand. The simplest thing you can do to help is to raise funds to buy essential items that can aid the victims. Get together with a few of your friends and start mini projects to create awareness and to collect donations.

Instead of sitting around and feeling sorry for the victims, be proactive and take action.

We’re the kids of Gen Y, so I’m sure we can come up with something.

And be generous and whole-hearted when you’re at it. If you’re going to argue that it’s your school break and you’d like to have all the fun you want, think of the victims who have no opportunity to enjoy their end of the year.

It is only fair that we try to ease their burdens and put a smile on their faces after all they’ve been through.

Plus, it would be great to have everyone ending the year on a positive note. We can learn to appreciate the things we have as we empathise with those who are less fortunate. And this positive attitude will certainly bring us far in life.

*The writer is a member of The Star’s BRATs young journalist programme, organised by R.AGE. To find out how you can join the programme, log on to

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