Compassion in Organizing


We do not have to know people personally to be compassionate, most of the time when we see a tragedy in facebook from someone else, we may feel bad, but we do not do anything about it. Henry Nouwen once said: “Compassion is hard because it requires the inner disposition to go with others to place where they are weak, vulnerable, lonely, and broken.”

I added Eduardo Samaniego in facebook one year ago because I saw we had so many common friends, and his updates used to come out at my friend’s walls, so I just introduced myself and asked to be added as a friend. I would have never imagined how bless I was going to get by him. Since then I have totally stalked his facebook status because they were filled of great experiences of resilience, hope and perseverance. If I was feeling down, I will read one of his very long posts, and I mean very long posts, and realized my life was doing great and I needed to be thankful.

Eduardo’s story represents the story of many immigrants coming to this country to fulfil their dreams . it represents the life of a young fellow without fear to face his cruel and uncertain reality, and leave behind his mom and family. I imagine him embracing his heart, breathing deeply into his soul, and setting his eyes into the horizon for the great journey ahead. It has not been easy, but he keeps pushing forward.

Almost one month ago when he was ready to start his second year at the College where he has a full scholarship, he was involved in horrific fire accident, and after 26 days at the hospital, 15 of them in intensive care, he is been released to his family in Georgia to keep with his long recovery.

When we think about organizing must of the time we think about giving power to the powerless, the collective fight for a common struggle, the many marches, rally, art, and music. We think about popular education, liberation, and transformation but It is not very common to hear the word compassion. When I saw what happened to Eduardo, my heart was filled with compassion, and I thought to myself: “This is a guy who has always shared with us that his family is back in Mexico, so if he was my brother, or my nephew what would I do for him?”

Organizing produces change, but organizing with compassion produces transformation, and bonds people together to stand up for any adversities that may come to keep moving in this journey we call life. Organizing with sympathy creates solidarity Organizinng with compassion and love creates a sense of togetherness and belonging,

“Compassion asks us to go where it hurts, to enter into the places of pain, to share in brokenness, fear, confusion, and anguish. Compassion challenges us to cry out with those in misery, to mourn with those who are lonely, to weep with those in tears. Compassion requires us to be weak with the weak, vulnerable with the vulnerable, and powerless with the powerless. Compassion means full immersion in the condition of being human.” Henry Nouwen

It is because of this amazing attitude towards life that I started the indiegogo campaign for him, and through the help of many “angels” like he is calling them, we were able to raise more than $6,000 dollars in less than a month.

Tomorrow I will meet Eduardo for the first time, and give him the money all of you have contributed. The campaign is going to keep open so you can still giving to Eduardo’s recovery. We know he will continue to do amazing things. and I am looking forward to what is coming ahead.

“The fire burned 43% of my body, it made me break my hand and it cracked my vertebrae but it did nothing to my courage, the fire did nothing to my faith, it did nothing to my hopes and dreams, this accident did however strengthen my resilience, it has fuelled my passion to help others and me, being alive today is a clear testament to the fact that there is a better tomorrow awaiting for me.” Eduardo

Please let’s keep helping him in his journey ahead, be part of his recovery. You can donate here:


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