RHTLaw Taylor Wessing's CSR Star

RHTLaw Taylor Wessing's CSR Star

 

Who would have ever thought that busy-bee Christabel Lim, Marketing and Communications Executive at RHTLaw Taylor Wessing would have the spare time to go on overseas mission trips and help the needy?

“Growing up, I took a liking to reading and watching National Geographic. I occasionally also saw photos of my parents’ friends embarking on overseas mission trips. That got me started on wanting to travel the world to make a difference,” explains Christabel.

And despite her busy schedule, travel the world to make a difference she did.

Christabel embarked on several short missions with her church to Batam, Indonesia where she undertook various tasks with one aim in mind – to help the less fortunate.

“My nerves definitely got to me on my very first mission trip. I thought that the difference in language would be a hurdle, but was happy to discover that the universality of a smile overcame all barriers.”

For her first mission, Christabel and her fellow church friends helped to rebuild houses in a slum village. “As this was a first experience for most of us, we had to rely on the villagers to guide us through the rebuilding process,” she recalls. Though anxious, Christabel couldn’t wait to pull her weight and help out.

“I was pumped up, all ready to carry bricks, pick up a hammer and be one of the boys. In the end, the alpha males ended up doing all the heavy-lifting while us girls painted the houses and had fun playing with the children.”

In a separate mission, Christabel and her friends participated in a one-day feeding programme for the children of Batam’s slums. The food used in the programme was bought from Batam itself with the intention of contributing to their economy. Little did she know that this particular mission would be a poignant experience for her.

“I expected the children to be happily gobbling up all their food, but we noticed that they were not finishing their meals. When probed, they told the translator that they were saving the food for their family.”

Christabel admitted that she did not expect the children to be so sensible at such a young age as to put aside portions of their food for their family members. However, what surprised her even more was how carefree the children were. She observed that it was hard to miss the smiles and joyous laughter of the children despite the poor living conditions that they were in.

Other than rebuilding houses and feeding the children, Christabel and fellow mission-goers engaged in yet another mission where they taught the English language to the children of Batam. Simple words such as our sense organs and colours were taught to children between the ages of 10 to 12 years through the use of story-telling and the good-old-fashioned worksheets.

“I was rather nervous preparing for this. I was given a particular topic to teach and the thought of standing in front of about 30 children was intimidating,” recalls Christabel.

However, all of her efforts in planning for this particular mission paid off when she witnessed the children scribbling down notes, completely immersed in her lesson. As she continued participating in this teach-English mission, Christabel no longer jittered at the thought of teaching to a room full of children. In fact, she is now deemed as an “experienced-goer” as she frequently volunteers for such mission.

The thought of going back to visit the fruits of her labour has crossed Christabel’s mind a few times. In the years to come, Christabel intends to visit other countries, those much further away such as Africa for more voluntary missions. Christabel’s family has been supportive of her ambitions though she admits that her folks worry for her safety just like any other parent would.

“My dad, being overly protective, asserted that I text him the moment I arrived in Batam. I had to pass him the phone numbers of other team members too!” exclaims Christabel. “I have to admit that I occasionally have forgotten to drop him the “I-have-arrived-safely” text which has made him quite jumpy,” she adds sheepishly.

All in all, Christabel believes that these missions she volunteered in have made her even more appreciative and grateful for all that she has in life. The key lesson she has learned from those she helped was that by simply having a different perspective on things in life, one can truly be a happy person even with the little he or she has.

“Do your best and have few regrets. Life is precious; everyone deserves a chance, and probably a second chance. There are many things to be grateful for, if only you’d take the time to think about it.”

Being a firm that is dedicated to giving back to society, RHTLaw Taylor Wessing is proud of Christabel’s continuous involvement in overseas mission trips. Her efforts and regular contributions in caring for those who are less fortunate hold true to the heart of our firm’s culture, making her a true individual champion of CSR.

RHTLaw Taylor Wessing firmly supports Christabel’s intent to carry on engaging in such mission trips, and wishes her all the best in achieving her dream of volunteering for a mission trip to Africa.