2009 – National 5th Place Award Winner:                                           

Mallory Thelen, Kentucky.

Greed or Giving: Which has a Greater Impact on Society ?

A couple months ago in my community, there was a house raffle called the St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway. You could purchase a ticket for one hundred dollars and have a chance to win this house worthier over a quarter of a million dollars. All of the proceeds of this fundraiser went to St. Jude, a cancer research hospital for children. Well, my mom’s company was the auditors for this event, and I came along to earn service hours by separating tickets into different boxes. We were in the WCPO Television Station where the live drawing took place. During the time I was working there, I saw many children’s stories. They were stories of survival, perseverance, and hope. It was then and there that I realized that without people’s generosity, without their readiness to give what they have, we would not have made this much progress. Because of giving, we are providing scientists with the money needed to perform vital tests that could lead to an absolute cure for cancer. Because of giving, the survival rate of leukemia patients has gone from four percent in 1962 to ninety-four percent today.
Hurricane Katrina is another example of giving. It was the most devastating hurricane in our country’s history. Millions were left homeless and desperate for ordinary necessities. People from all over our nation recognized this, and put their own wants on hold to help out the city of New Orleans. Fire fighters and emergency workers traveled there immediately to save victims and give them proper medical care. After the water had substantially decreased, construction companies from all over came to help rebuild homes. Employees from Duke Energy went down to restore power. Churches had extra collections; volunteers from the Red Cross went out into the streets to ask for money. We as a whole went beyond our needs, and that says something about our unity and what we can do together.
Be Concerned, or B-Con, is a place where the less fortunate can go to receive free food and essential needs. B-Con is a non-profit organization, so it does not benefit from any sales. All of the items there are donated by other companies. I work there every year around Christmas time, and the shelves are always fully stocked. Even in this period of economic decline, they still have surplus amount of everything. B-Con is open to the public because of giving people; who give their time, talents, and treasures.
Giving has provided food for the hungry, shelter for the homeless, and most importantly: progress. Giving can overshadow the power of greed. Winston Churchill once said, “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” This statement is so true, and it further emphasizes that giving has a greater impact on society.





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