You get a flower! You get a flower! You get a flower! Everybody gets a flower!
This year I celebrated Mother’s Day at the Taichung City Senior Citizens Service Center, a place that provides educational and recreational services to seniors in Taichung. I pass by the center every day during my commute to school. A week before Mother’s Day, I was walking by the complex and saw a large group of older women slowly moving their arms and legs in perfect synchrony. Just an ordinary Monday morning in Taiwan. Then I thought, they deserve some flowers for Mother’s Day! Paper flowers, that is.
Throughout that week, I made paper carnations with my students. Carnations in hand, we walked across the street to the senior center. Overall, we delivered more than 70 handmade carnations—and smiles—to the agōng and amàs (Taiwanese for grandpa and grandmas) at the center.
As a volunteer emergency medical technician, I often delivered care to the elderly in my local community back in New Jersey. Spending time with the agōng and amàs at the center and seeing them smile along with my students at Li-Ren reminded me of the impact a little compassion can make in our communities.
Special thanks to the staff at the Taichung City Senior Citizens Service Center as well as the students, teachers, and administration at Li-Ren Elementary School for helping me give life and meaning to a handful of paper flowers. And of course, Happy Mother’s Day Mom!
Author: Alex Lin, 2017-2018