The November political exercise, however, marked a high point in the lives of septuagenarians’ Victor and Dorothy Sam, who for many years have made available their spruced up garage of their Anaheim home to be used as a polling place.
The couple refused to “retire” in spite of their seeming ability to enjoy the fruits of their labor in achieving the American dream since making America their adopted home years ago.
The Sams knew what freedom mean having come from South Africa where as Asians they experience being discriminated against as a result of apartheid, “where system of systematic segregation, established by the state authority in a country, against the social and civil rights of a certain group of citizens, due to ethnic prejudices is practiced.”
The couple had been deprived under the system of the rights, association and movements like the majority of black inhabitants of South Africa where the Afrikaner minority ruled. Apartheid was enforced from 1948-1994.
Victor and Dorothy were opposed to the segregationist policy as deep in their heart freedom should be enjoyed all. For some 50 years, the couple had been deprived some basic human entitlements.
A divine appointment led to their meeting at a mass action and had since been joined by a commonness of their belief.
America and the democratic ideals it represents has become a perfect environment for what they believe and provided the venue for their innate altruism and compassion to others.
Their adopted home have been the fertile ground for the spirit of volunteerism and joined others in embracing a unique culture where thinking about the welfare of others has become second nature.
The Sams are recipients of a Presidential Volunteer Election Award for “demonstrating in the last five or more elections the kind of commitment to the community that moves America a step closer to the great promise”.
Victor and Dorothy who are also active in other community ministries derive their strength apparently from the joy of serving others through their God-endowed gifts which they generously share. They are part of an army of volunteers in America where serving others has become a way of life.
In a recent study of the Corporation for National and Community Service, 26 percent of Americans volunteer. Some 60.8 million made themselves available for volunteer work according to the six-year report which involves 60,000 households and 162 large and mid-sized cities around the county. The report also indicated a growing number of volunteers who dedicate substantial time to serve.