28 July 2007

Community Service

New homes being built for homeless survivors of the Rwandan genocide - David Mundell's blogVarious people have wondered what the Conservatives' Project Umubano was all about and why it had David Cameron flying out to address the Rwandan Parliament in the midst of the floods crisis here.

Perhaps Michael Bates has the answer in his meditation "Rediscovering the Spirit of Public Service" in the current issue of The Difference:

The starting point for a life of service is a belief in the intrinsic value of every human life. The true motive for service is compassion, and this cannot be measured by performance indicators and league tables. It cannot be legislated for. It is an ethos, which may be expressed though the body and mind but is born of the soul. If society addresses only the mind and body, then we fail to nurture the source of service.
Umubano means "friendship and co-operation" in the Kinyarwandan language; the project saw over 40 Conservative volunteers working alongside Rwandans on around 20 different social action projects.