Margaret Sangster a great social worker, once told the story of her work in the slums of a big city. She told of how she managed to organize a gymnasium to be open to boys in the area after school. One afternoon a young boy hobbled into the gym on crutches. One of his legs was twisted badly and turned backwards. In speaking to him Miss Sangster found out that he had been hit by a truck.

The compassionate social worker had the boy examined by an orthopaedic surgeon. The surgeon found that it would be possible to perform a series of operations to restore the boy’s use of his legs. Miss Sangster persuaded the doctors to do the surgery without pay,and a bank to sponsor the hospital bill. The boys parents were persuaded to give their consent for the operations. A series of operations was performed. Then followed months of therapy. Finally the day came when the boy walked into the gym, ran down the court, and sent a basketball spinning into the net. Sangster said: “When I saw that boy run, I shed tears of joy.”

Then Miss Sangster stopped and asked her listeners:That boy is now grown-up,and do you know what he is doing today?” “No, he is not a school teacher,a farmer or a factory worker. He is serving three life sentences in prison for robbery and murder.” Then with tears streaming down her cheeks, Margaret Sangster said:”I was so busy teaching the boy how to walk that I forgot to teach him where to walk.”

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