A fortnight ago, we received a request to help an older gentleman with mobility problems to move house.
These sorts of requests are all a part of the 'solidarity work' we do. Solidarity is helping others who are unable to help themselves. Often the help that we give is provided by our residents (companions) themselves. This is win win - it helps our companions to know that they are making a positive contribution and it helps the recipients.
This request was quite short notice, on the other side of Oxfordshire and reportedly quite a large job – so we initially said we unfortunately wouldn't be able to help.
However, when we discussed this later with one of our companions, Ku Chi, we found out that he really believed we should offer our services anyway, however limited. We changed our minds and said yes. So with just the two of us in a Luton van we made an early start and worked non-stop all day, moving a house worth of belongings in two van trips.
The man was overwhelmed with the service and confessed that he had previously been desperately anxious about the fate of his house contents (including a room sized cage for his Scarlet Macaw and several life-size resin soldier statues!).
Although it took slightly longer than we thought and we were aching the next day, we were delighted that we had taken another look at the request and we owe it to Ku Chi for believing we could do it.