I guess that was my first taste of success.
I was just a school kid in Grade Five.
What started as an innocent gesture turned into getting me noticed for the rest of my school life.
And my secret?
Postage stamps off envelopes.
In those days they could have value as cancelled postage stamps.
Not any more.
Many years ago they were collected by the Save The Children Fund and resold as ‘Mission Stamps’.
The packets of used postage stamps were like a mystery bag where you’d never know what you might find.
Ahh, the good old days.
Those mystery bags were, allegedly, unsorted, and a mixture of countries and values.
Who knows what treasure one might find.
The proceeds would be added to the charity funds that, even today, help the care and suffering of innocent children around the world.
Orphaned, injured in war, suffering disease, malnourished.
Still the case, of course, and still my favoured charity.
I was collecting these used stamps from my friends and neighbours when I decided to ask the Class of Year Five at the East Ivanhoe Primary School in Melbourne, Australia, if they would also save their used stamps for me.
My teacher found out.
She got behind me.
And asked me to start a Stamp Club in activities time every week.
So suddenly the whole school knew.
I had my own school Stamp Club.
Without even trying.
My Stamp Club attracted the attention of the Principal.
Which is how, without even trying, I got noticed in Year Five.
The moral of the story is, a small act of kindness and compassion can lead to greater things.
Which it did.
In my school career.
I’ll tell you how next time.
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