Give a little – It will help a lot

For years this slogan, "Give a little, it would help a lot" has been on posters and radio and television adverts and at different times of year it wase seen and heard more often than at other times. In my memory, one of the times was Christmas, and even though I mightn't have seen or heard it for several years, I was reminded of it last evening.
Nowadays there's a lot of talk of secularism and the loss of spirituality in society, people may have turned away from the church for a variety of reasons, but they still have a lot of love and giving in their hearts.
This was driven home to me as I went to my local blood clinic to make a donation. It had been over a year since I last gave blood, for no particularly good reason, probably the time they were in the area didn't suit me or maybe I didn't know about it, however I was made aware of their being in the area this time, so no excuses.
The clinic in Midleton was scheduled to begin at 5pm, so I decided I'd get in early and avoid the crowds, however as I walked through the doors, I saw at least 20 people in front of me who all had exactly the same idea.

For a moment my heart sunk, but then I copped on and saw how brilliant this was. On a dark November evening a crowd of volunteers had gathered to donate their blood to help save someone else's life, and I was fortunate and privileged to be able to do do this. I joined the queue, and there was banter and talk of the weather and the queue, all in good spirits, and once the queue started moving, it progressed quickly. All the while people were joining the queue, arriving after busy days at work, and still willing to take the time to give of themselves in the most literal and practical of ways.
At each stage of the process from check-in to blood test, to transfusion to refreshments, the Irish Blood Transfusion Service Personnel were genuinely thankful to all of us for making the effort.
As I left the blood centre, walking into the wind and rain, I was energised by the amount of goodness that exists in society. Much of the time, we only hear bad news in the media, however there is plenty of goodness and love and good people all around us everyday. People doing good and not broadcasting it.  I fully understand that not everyone is in a position to give blood for a variety of very valid reasons, and I'm sure they have their own ways of giving, quietly, just as the blood donors I encountered in Midleton last evening.
Our Men's shed is a little bit like this, men getting together in a safe environment to help each other. Through chatting and working on projects we build self confidence, learn new skills and with the synergies created from combining life experience and wisdom, we can help each other to acquire the knowledge to improve mental wellness and in doing so improve all of our lives in small or not so small ways.