Helping the poor, is vital for our progress.
Lets keep our ship afloat- or we all sink!
All of us are leading such ‘busy’ lives, there is no time for anyone else. – Neither do we have time for our family members, friends, or community members – what to say about helping the downtrodden!
Just remember the case of the Titanic. Usually, a ship has three decks. So, normally the elite are kept on the highest level with all the luxuries. Then the middle deck, with the middle class people in it. Finally – the lowest deck with the lowest ‘class’ of people in it.
Just know that the ship’s lowest deck is also closest to the bottom of the sea, if they aren’t cared for enough, they can sink the whole ship. How? – Due to their lack of knowledge, skills and resources.
If a hole occurs in the lowest part of the ship? Yes, the entire ship will sink!
So, this is why it is extremely important to care for the poorest of the poor in our society.
This ship is called Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh or India or anyone of the third world countries!
In today’s world:
Watch how the lowest deck is pulling rest of ship down:
• We are only planning for ourselves: Right now, we don’t care. We plan, work and live for ourselves. It is all about ‘I, me and myself’.
• Now, look at the lowest socio economic group: they live their lives, and earn by serving us, working for us, and making our lives so comfortable. They do this so well, that many of us don’t want to go abroad, because of the wonderful lives we have, due to them. As I write, my domestic help is going out in this hot sun, to do my market chores, while I sit in this air conditioned room to write this blog post.
• Mismanagement of resources: we are handing over all our resources in the care of the illiterate ‘helpers’. Not realizing that though we are careful with water, gas and electricity conservation, our staff isn’t caring. They haven’t been educated about it. We need to give them time to realize the importance of caring for the resources of our earth. This is why even the educated homes have the same issues of lack of preservation of resources, because we leave all our assets in the care of illiterate staff.
Our gross attitude towards the lower class:
We’ve got to treat every human being with respect and regard. This is where it begins.
The concept of disregard of the poor people in our society begins from, prominent persons saying: ‘they are like dogs, treat them like dogs, they will respect you more!’ With that attitude, if you are going to talk to them, how will things improve for them? (I’ve heard this with my own ears, and it is prevalent among many in the upper and middle class society.)
• We literally use and abuse them, in our homes, offices and factories.
• We are not caring of their human rights and make them work beyond humanitarian levels. (Believe me, this goes on in Western countries too, especially with illegal migrants! Also with other employees from underdeveloped countries, who do not know their rights or are too afraid to mention it!)
• When these poor people grow old and weak, we let them go.
• We do not train them properly, nor educate them. So when they are lacking in productivity we get harsh and disrespectful towards them.
• Yes, we help them occasionally, and then let them spend rest of their lives, being obliged to us.
• We are not careful of their times of sleep, rest or food. Nor give health benefits.
• In short we do nothing for them. Leaving them to their own meager resources, thinking and mindsets.
So what ‘planning’ do the underprivileged do?
• No family planning is their biggest plan: They know they are on their own. So they do future planning of their own: no family planning:
o In the hope that these ‘hands’ will help them as free labor in their lives,
o Take care of them when they fall sick or when they grow old and helpless.
o In fact, their cute faces will get them earnings too! – As beggars and breadwinners as domestic help,
o at worst they can be sold off for adoption or even prostitution.
o Today, girls are given as domestic help to families for a lump sum through agents.
o I’ve seen Sri Lankan maids in Kuwait and other Gulf countries as full time maids. Most are treated very badly, even sexually abused on regular basis. Of course, some are treated well, when they get lucky being with good families.
• Health benefits: Through quacks in the field or genuine ‘hakeems’ or experts in herbal treatments which is a science of millions of years actually.
• Spiritual healing: by visiting shrines and going to ‘faqirs’, or bathing in streams with ‘magical’ powers, (actually having minerals from underground, as sulphur in Mango Pir, Karachi.) They find solace through these places and people. Every area has a ‘mazar’ or a ‘pir’ where they go in hoards. Yes, Pir Chinasi was one of them here, Data Darbar, – the whole region is full of them. These are shrines of great saints who once lived in these regions who listened to the problems of the people.
Note: These people are still thirsty for that kind of love and care. Today, free food and solace is found in these shrines, hence the people go there in hoards.
On top of this – Our biggest blunder:
• Resources in hands of illiterate and untrained staff: We put all our hard earned resources in the inexperienced hands of our employees at home and in our offices: the Mercedes Benz, Audie or BMW, the food we eat at home or in restaurants is cooked by them, our children and next generation are being cared for by them.
o Train staff well,
o Supervise often,
o Strict rules and time tables in homes and offices.
o Surprise checks.
o Rules of rewards and punishments for adhering to them or not.
• Quality of work suffering due to distraction of social media at all levels: While in offices, shopping, doing personal work and holidaying, what are we doing? We are busy with our social media. Constantly. It has become an epidemic. So, there is no flow of thought at work. Mostly, ‘spending our time on social media uploading statuses. (Yes, we are doing it with great responsibility.) As one writer in the West lamented (I’m forgetting his name,) how much more inefficient everyone has become lately, at the workplace; as their minds are constantly diverted. My gardener comes and all the work he does is with his phone to his ear, chatting with someone! Hence his mind isn’t into it, so he misses the weeds and neglects the plants. So, smart offices (and bosses), have banned mobile phones, Facebook and Instagrams in their offices. But of course, everyone has a way to go around it. Yet, it does make some difference.
My message here:
• Yes, there are many people helping the lowest socio economic group. Pakistan is one of the most charitable of countries. I know Pakistanis abroad who are even giving more charity for Pakistan. The message here is to continue with it, and do it intelligently. It can’t make a difference unless we all hold hands and do it together with focused objectives.
How to help underprivileged people:
1. Stop beggary by children:
o Give them food, (let’s take along a leftover food or snacks for them, clean drinking water too. But not give cash.
o Instead, pay those organizations and persons who have schools for such children;
o Do volunteer work with such organizations .
o Once these beggar’s guardians and parents realize it is not working, it is bound to stop.
2. Education and skill development:
o Individually: teaching them ourselves, or keeping a tutor at home to teach staff. Giving them on-the-job training. Run your home like an institution.
o Collectively: in your own community give monthly fees for at least one or more children.
o Invest in technical training: so they can become independent and earn.
3. Entrepreneurship courses:
Such short courses would be best for teenagers of both genders to be able to start their own small business or assist their parents. This can be done in schools as part of the curriculum.
4. Help in marrying off their children:
Marrying off their children is the biggest dilemma of every person in these parts of the world. Somehow the greatest expenses are carried out resulting in debts for life. So, if one can help them in realizing that it can be done with least expense. Especially to help single parents to marry off their daughters in a dignified way is great. This is how one can be of great help:
o Getting things for the bride or groom.
Clothes (12 suits for girl or 6 suits for young man.)
Items for house: utensils, household goods, even furniture if you have it.
Food for the event. Even Rs.10,000 can make a difference.
5. Help in construction of their house:
o Either for whole house,
o Or pay for the roof or girders, etc.
o Whatever you can do for it.
o The idea is to give them a secure roof over their heads.
6. Give them a layette for the baby: If an employee is in family way, we can facilitate in every way we can, leave, less heavy work during pregnancy, and clothes and items for new baby.
7. Pay for health problems, operations etc. I know many organization who do it, but many don’t. Let us help whenever we can.
8. Paying for water pump installation: in their vicinity to provide water for the area.
9. Educate them in family planning: the facilities are there, but they aren’t affective because negative elements. We have to sit and talk to them and address their issues.
10. Paying for higher education like PEF (Professional Education Foundation): This is the best way, to give scholarships to deserving students from schools for underprivileged children. There are negligible facilities for them available right now.
A round up of this blog post:
• Importance of caring for the poor in our society. If not for them, know that if we don’t, their ignorance will sink our whole ship. We need to love and care for them. Help them out through improving their knowledge and information in every way we can. Every day, if we make a difference to one person, I’m sure it will make a difference, to our whole country. Just do one thing today.
• Do, your acts in memory of your loved ones: Either as sadqa, or in memory of loved ones you lost.
• Ten ways to make a difference, as above. I’m sure you are doing most of these, the rest can be followed too, in any way we can.
PS: This amazing flower bush too must have been planted here by a gardener….. 🙂