Nicola and Harumi helped organize Angel for a Day in Rome on May 20, 2018. They share their experience of this event they called “Olympics of the Angels.”
This was the second “Olympics of the angels”, organized by Angel for a Day in Rome, which took place in the Montespaccato district, at the Virtus Boccea sports field. Children arrived at 10:00 a.m., and together with the “Angels” formed teams that divided by nations who then took part in Olympic events: games, competitions, sports and skills tests, to win a place on the podium.
The day ended at 5:00 p.m. with the award ceremony and a snack offered by the families of the European University of Rome. All the participants also got a present at the end of the day.
The “Angels” are young volunteers, students of the European University of Rome and friends, members of the Rotaract club, members of the Regnum Christi and many other young people from all over Rome.
Harumi: tonight, when I get into bed, I’ll say a gigantic YES!
That moment immediately after doing that strange thing that makes us think “grandfather is definitely better than me”? That famous moment when you all say that you think about everything? After having rethought the existential questions and after you have not found an answer, at some point you ask “Am I satisfied with myself and what I did today, or until now?” Some will say, “Yes, after all it all went well”, others “Hmm, if I did my business maybe it would be better but it’s over,” others will say no and cry, others will say a YES strong and clear without thinking twice. Well, tonight, when I get into bed, I’ll say a gigantic YES! Because? Because that shirt I’m wearing in the picture is much more than a shirt and I’m wearing it because I deserve it, because, you know, not everyone can afford it. That t-shirt weighs heavily on you and makes you feel a great responsibility, the responsibility to make children happy and not to make them think about problems for a day at least.
Because yes, we are Angel for a Day, an association made up of boys, girls, adults and even children, an association that promises to make young and old happy by creating special days for them and, today, there is was one, and it was fantastic. I can say that it was my day, because, even though I’ve worked on this for a year, today while playing with children I really understood the importance of the role I was playing. I’m sorry for those who do not volunteer, I’m really sorry because you do not know what you lose, you do not know the feelings that this kind of experience will give you. This morning, when the children arrived, a little girl who was looking around at some point turns towards me, looks at me, runs towards me and while she hugs me she says “here is my Angel!” This is the moment I will think about when I lay in bed. The joy I felt at that moment, the tiredness that vanished despite the five hours of sleep, these are the real beautiful things that life gives you, the free things that are of immense wealth.
And it is precisely for these things that tonight when I will ask the question “Am I satisfied with myself and what I did?” I will answer “YES, as satisfied as I’ve never been!” No other obstacle or difficult exam in the world will give you the same satisfaction as the smile of a child who does not see you every day, but when he sees you, even after months, it is as if he had never left you.
I am an Angel, and even if I am only for this day or only for the others that will come, after today, I am sure that a “piece of wing” will always be attached to my shoulder.
Nicola: So, I became an angel
I participated as a volunteer at the “Olympics of the Angels”, a day of outdoor games (sports trials and competitions), organized by Angel for a Day in Rome, in the Montespaccato neighborhood, at the Virtus Boccea sports field for children in special situations. It was a special day, in which the volunteers (Angels for a Day) dedicated our time and attention to children who are less fortunate than us, because they live in situations of hardship, marginality or poverty and are in foster care in family homes.
My name is Nicola, I am a student in my third year of Economics at the European University of Rome and now I am working with other people to create the website of “Angel for a Day” as an IT collaborator. I had never participated in the days of Angel for a Day, but I was fascinated and then offered for the first time the opportunity to become part of it. I immediately decided to accept this “pleasant challenge” and last Sunday I presented myself at the scheduled time, at the virtuoso field. Once there, I felt love and passion that animate the staff members, the “angels” volunteers and all the people who work hard to make the day something magical.
I would like to underline the affection of everyone and the welcome they gave me: they made me feel immediately at home. I confess that at the beginning, I felt a certain anxiety and fear but the warmth that I felt from them prevailed over everything and gave me the strength to contribute, in my small way, to make a good service of solidarity. So, I became an angel, or rather the angel of Gabriel an 8 year-old. The thing that has impressed me the most was his smile, so sincere and pure, to convey that joy of appreciating every single moment of the day. I was admired to see how he expressed all his desire to live and considered himself a lucky child, despite his difficult situation: this gave me the awareness of having to do something for him, to have to pay me back something… So, I decided to dedicate all my time and all my attention, I tried to understand it, to enter his world, but being careful not to be too impetuous. My attempt was successful, because I got in tune with him and in a short time we became two perfect accomplices.
I thank all those who gave me this wonderful opportunity, because at the end of the day you realize that it is more what you received, rather what you gave. I realize that it is difficult to communicate this message with words, you need to experience certain emotions to fully understand its meaning. For this reason I invite you to participate in the next day with the “Angel for a Day”, I assure you that you will not regret it. I hope to see you at the next opportunity.