Author: Zeng Wen-Xuan
A wildfire changed the lives of 26,000 people. A pink ribbon represents a ruined house. When you enter the disaster zone, you could see pink ribbons fluttering everywhere. Memories aren’t enough bring back the good old days.
On a brisk December morning, the sun had not yet risen. Two bused carried about a hundred Tzu Chi volunteers heading to the Oroville Community Center, to offer survivors of the Camp Fire some relief. Through it all, the compassion we witnessed showed us the most beautiful parts of human nature.
At 5 pm, the volunteers got back on the bus and headed home. Taking in everything they’d done, the people they’d met, the time they’d spent with them, these volunteers became stronger and more open-minded.
One of the Tzu Chi volunteers, Grace Chen, who was assisting with the relief supply, went there the second day of the fire. When she was in Chico, she visited 7 shelters, and began arranging for Tzu Chi’s disaster relief team to come in and provide more extensive aid.
In two short days, she added 900 miles to her car. After working restlessly for a month, Grace sat on the bus with cramps in her legs and a sore back. But when she mentioned about the things she saw and heard in this month, Grace said, “ I wish I could do a little bit more everyday… we are so lucky to be there for the victims. If not for this volunteer uniform, survivors wouldn’t be open to sharing their stories with us. Today, they sat in front of us, told us their stories and hugged us. They told us we did a great job!”