SEISEN INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, TOYKO, JAPAN
What does TASSEL mean to you? How has TASSEL impacted your life?
I was a freshman at our school when I first encountered TASSEL. I was going up to the computer lab when suddenly I heard two seniors loudly talking to the computer screen in front of them. Confused, yet intrigued, I watched for a while: they were teaching the letter A to a group of little children through video call. That day, I went and asked my friends what the seniors I had seen were doing, and I soon found out that it was part of a club called TASSEL, which had just started that year at our school.
This year, I am a senior and the co-president of the Seisen chapter of TASSEL. This being my third year as a VSEE teacher, TASSEL has become a big part of my life. Whether it is talking to Joji about what needs to be done next, or having a meeting with the rest of the executives to talk about ideas for fundraising within our chapter, or collaborating with the St. Mary’s TASSEL chapter to hold events to raise awareness about our cause within our community, TASSEL has become a part of my everyday life.
Although we often think service has to do with helping the poor, and that having a bake sale and sending the money to a group of underprivileged people somewhere in the world is helpful, oftentimes we do not think about the people themselves and how the money will exactly help them, but rather that the act of donating makes us feel better as human beings. However, TASSEL has taught me differently. I have built a strong connection with my VSEE class each year I have taught, even coming to the point where I know some of the students by name by the end of the year. I have learned the true meaning of service: it is a two way interaction. TASSEL and talking with Joji has made me realize the many atrocities that are present within Cambodia, and the one most important action I have learned that I can do is to teach English.
Our school, especially because it is Catholic, has a lot of service projects running through the grades from kindergarten to 12th grade. However, TASSEL is by far the best one I’ve been a part of. Not only have I met so many people within my own school who share the same interest as me as being a part of our TASSEL community, I have truly been able to make a difference in the Cambodian children’s lives. Something as simple as teaching them English will allow them to learn more and get better jobs as they grow up, breaking the cycle of poverty their families have been stuck in for such a long time. TASSEL really does change lives, and it has changed mine along with it.