All my life people have told me that my father always led a life for others, mainly
because he was the only living heir to a huge kindred and inherited a large sum of
money. However, his charitable attitude towards mankind ensured that most of what he
inherited was put to use for the welfare of others. I think that my father has greatly influenced my humanitarian side.
I too have volunteered in a lot of charitable homes and non-profit organisations throughout my life. My passion for serving other people and living for others comes from the belief of giving back to society more than what it has given me.
Anybody who has ever worked in a charity knows how difficult it is to procure funds for smooth functioning of the institution. I have witnessed many such instances where the financial crunch resulted in lengthy halts in work and reduction of salaries. In such times, sometimes a miraculous generous donation is a saviour for all. In reality, such miracles are mostly rare and unexpected. I have been fortunate enough a couple of times to see them happen but there will always be one instance that particularly stands out.
In the year 2017, I was working at Wool’s Orphanage in Delhi for a few months when there was a financial crisis because of the sudden demonetisation in the country. We didn’t have any permits to hold fundraising events for the next two months because of some legal proceedings. It was a difficult period for everyone in the office. All the employees were trying their best to get donors and financiers but failed miserably. Nevertheless, after a month we suddenly started receiving small donations in great numbers. In a week, we had enough funds to get us through 3 months at least. All of us were amazed at the sudden miracle. After many futile attempts by every employee in the orphanage, somehow we managed to get through a very tough phase. Everybody tried to fancy up a lot of stories but nobody came up with anything reasonable about how we got so many anonymous donations in a week.
I had written and maintained a blog since my college years. This has gained me quite some following. However, in the following years, the blog had reduced to stories about philanthropism at places I had been to, actions of gratitude I had witnessed, accomplishments of different charitable institutions I had been a part of and also the hardships that people faced in our line of work. During the previous month, I happened to mention the problems that we were currently going through in one of my blogs. Never in my dreams had I ever thought that my mentioning it somewhere will make any difference or bring in any kind of help. However, it did happen.
In a month, the management committee of the Wool’s Orphanage was back on track and things were running very smoothly. One day, a very old student of mine contacted me. While I was in college, pursuing my graduation I was supposed to teach a group of forty students from high school in an NGO as part of a social work project for a month.
Be that as it may, I went on to teach them for the next two years as well till I didn’t finish my degree. It had been ten years since I even saw them. The student who reached out to me happened to be one of my readers. He contacted all of his friends from that group and told them about my plight. Each one of them, in decent places now,, decided to give in whatever they could afford for the cause and to show me their gratitude for my contribution to their education. Reading the note I was moved by their sincere display of appreciation. My student also requested me to keep the identity of the donations to myself, keeping them anonymous like before.
This event left me wondering for quite some time. Of course it was by God’s grace that they came to know about the situation in the first place. But what was that cohesive force that made all those forty students get together and contribute for somebody they hadn’t met in ten years? It was a superpower actually, something so simple yet we forget about it often – gratitude.
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