Clad in dirty clothes, over- sized shirts, and barefooted, they walked in groups or sometimes wander alone like lost children in a big city. Mothers carry their babies staring at you with begging eyes. Other times, you would hear them knocking at the car windows singing while entreating for alms. It was a sight so repulsive that looking at them is such a big sore in the eyes.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I have nothing against them nor do they look so gross because of their appearance. It is their situation which somehow fills me with incredulity as I think of what the government is doing to alleviate their quandaries in life. Though truth be told, no government can totally eradicate these impoverished people, I can’t help but to think also what can be done to at least ease their malady.
The same thing is true in the Philippines where poverty can be seen in many people in the streets. The faces of destitution are too much to comprehend. Poverty is the greatest illness of the society. If it can’t be addressed, it is the very thing that would bring down the country.
Whenever I look at these unfortunate people in the streets and some major roads of Indonesia, I can’t help but to wonder how can one be a catalyst for change to combat this infirmity of the society. Perhaps, something may be started with a simple practice of sensitivity. Now, don’t ask me how to do it because it is something that must come from the heart.
Poverty comes in different forms. But, the worst kind is seen with the poverty in spirit. Something that we need to focus on if we want to address the different issues of these less fortunate people not only here in Indonesia but in other countries facing the same difficulty.
I wish that I can look at their faces one day no longer feeling the pity but hope.