Case Stories

Qurbani Project 2016

Making a widow's heart sing for joy

Rahima is a resident of village Khandarani, Liaqutpur, Rahim Yar Khan. Widowed eight years ago, she lives with her brother in a single-roomed house in the area, with no access to basic necessities of life at all.

Though in her late fifties, she works as a laborer at the fields of a local landlord in the area and hardly makes both ends meet.

Identified as a highly deserving case, Team Human Appeal made it a point to drop a parcel of meat at her house. It was all so sudden and expected that she became speechless for a while. Regaining herself, she started sharing the plight of her and confided that she tasted the meat not more than once or twice during the whole year.

"I live in utter poverty and having the luxury of sumptuous or splendid food like meat is out of imagination for me. An old woman like me can hardly manage meals three times a day, forget about the rest", she confided.

While leaving her house, Team HAI suddenly noticed few pieces of meat hung with a string against the wall of her house. On inquiry, she disclosed that someone in the morning had dropped a tiny packet of the sacrificial meal at her house to enjoy at night. With no fridge or refrigerator at her house, she thought it wise to dry the meat in the open air for preservation.

"I will try to use it over a period of several days. What else an elderly and poor woman can do. You people made me smile today by your noble gesture, I pray for all those who look after people like me. I believe there are thousands of people like me who are malnourished and poverty-struck, but still invisible to the society at large. Hats off to you for reaching to them! May Allah reward your efforts with the best results", she added.

Getting back to an old beneficiary with a surprise gift

Mahr Nigha is a resident of Ichriyan, Mansehra, and lives along with her seven children. Her husband Fazlur Rahman passed away eight years, leaving behind his family in total disarray.

While receiving a packet of meat, she burst into tears and underlined that HAI was the driving force behind her to come that far. "It is sponsoring two of my children who are getting education at a local school. Without its support, it could not have been possible at all. However, we still face a plethora of problems, especially the economic ones. We hardly manage to have meal three times a day by working sundry jobs", she added.

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"Eating meat is unthinkable for us under prevailing circumstances. HAI today made me and my children smile again; may be after months, as I don't remember when we tasted it last time. May Allah shower his blessings on you people and reward you abundantly".

Rising by lifting a widow

Libbo is a distant village at Tharparkar, comprising around 300 households. Dismaying as it must be, about 80% population of the village lives below the poverty line.

Fatima also lives at Libbo. Her husband passed away four years ago all of a sudden, leaving behind his large family in total disarray. In consequent, Fatima had to adopt the additional role of bread wining for her family, which unfortunately was too much for her due to non-availability of any income generation related opportunity to her in the area.

"There have been times when we dined only with a loaf of bread and water. Life at Tharparkar is no doubt very tough, though we're quite accustomed to it. But, to tell you the truth, sometimes it is too much, especially for an elderly woman, like myself."

Human Appeal International came to know about her ordeal through its field staff and made it a point to drop Qurbani meat at her house.

Pleasantly surprised, she received the team with a broad smile on her face. Sadness, however, again overpowered her when she started sharing the details of her troubled life. "The death of my husband opened the flood gates of hardships for us. Tonight we would eat meat, I don't know after how long? May be after months and months. I am grateful to Human Appeal for making our day, finally. May Allah bless you all for this especial gift."

Akbar for enhanced support and guidance

Thirty eight years old Muhammad Akbar is a resident of Johok Glab Shah at Basti Iman, Rahim Yar Khan. He has eight children, two out of them are unfortunately handicapped and bed riddled. He works as a tiller and lives a pretty hard life along with his family.

Almost five years back, he had lost his house in the floods in the area and had to shift to a makeshift camp. While receiving a packet of meal, he felt overwhelmed. "I've remain indebted to HAI because my association with it dates backs several years. When my house was drowned in the floods, it was HAI which provided me with a new one, of course much better than the destroyed one. I still live in that at the Basti Iman. The meat gifted today would further strengthen the ties between us as it signifies the fact that you have forsaken us".

"people like me who are the direct beneficiaries of the HAI projects, may have been provided with a shelter but they still need the support and guidance to improve their plight. I believe todays activity is a precursor to a renewed relationship", he underlined in his typical Punjabi style.

Defying odds with utmost courage and will

Abu-bakar is an embodiment of courage, will and determination. A resident of Islamkot, Tharparkar, he is blind by birth. His father is also a blind person, while his mother passed away a few years back.

“I am just blind, not disable, I am the earning hand for my father”, said Abu bakar.

Abu bakar earns his livelihood by making ropes with local shrubs and sells them in the local market. God has also gifted him with another skill of climbing trees. He can climb a tree without any help for collection of raw material for rope making.

just out of sympathy, the HAI field staff offered to drop the meat at his door step but he declined, insisting that he was just blind, not a handicapped person. He made it a point to reach to the distribution point and received the packet, personally.

“Although I can’t see, but I can feel and appreciate the love and affection the HAI has for the people of drought ravaged Tharparkar. May Allah reward your efforts fully and bless you abundantly to carry on your mission,” he added.

Qurbani Project 2014

Delighted she is to receive the "Eid Gift"

Pangs of migration never go easily. They keep you haunting in different shapes until you completely internalize them. Saja Begum, 65, is yet to reach this thresh hold and leading a truly miserable life at the moment at a refugee camp in Azad jammu and Kashmir (AJK), with economic worries turning things from bad to worse.

Getting hands even on sacrificial animals' meat may not be less than a pleasant surprise for her under such circumstances.

Way back in 1995, she migrated from Uri, occupied Kashmir, to AJK to escape from Indian atrocities and injustice. She had already lost her son at the hands of them and wanted to start a new life as early as possible.

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"With four daughters and one injured son, I crossed over the Line of Control (LoC) and reached here in AJK. The concerned authorities soon shifted us to this refugee camp at Mangbujri, Bagh, and since then we've been living here in abject conditions", says Saja with a visible anguish on her face.

"I can count on finger tips as how many times we tasted meat during this whole year. With my son unable to earn anything due to the bullets he received at the hands of Indian forces, we have to live on the monthly stipend the government provides to us. It helps you just keep the body and soul together and you can't think beyond that at all", she laments.

Like last time, this year again the HAI-Pak provided Qurbani meat to her and many other people living at the refugee camp. "We're truly delighted to receive this "eid gift" as we hardly get a chance to enjoy this luxury in our lives. May Allah bless all those who don't forget people like us on such very special occasions", exclaims Suja while receiving a 5 kg bag of the meat.

The HAI-Pak takes pride in the fact that each year it makes it a point to reach to the refugees living in various parts of AJK to reassure them that they are an integral part of our society and should not feel abandoned at all.

Reaching to Zarina living at a making shift camp since 2005

Living in a make shift camp, Zarina and her family epitomize the sufferings of a homeless family. Poverty, haplessness and frustration - writ large on the face of this family and anything like "qurbani meat" matters a lot to it for obvious reasons.

With her husband and seven children, Zarina has been living at this camp at Muzaffarabad, Azad Kashmir, since 2005 when a dedly earthquake uprooted her house in a jiffy. Established by a non-governmental organization, the camp was not a bad refuge under highly prevailing circumstances but living for a longer period of time under it turned out to be nightmare for the family, to say the least.

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"My husband is a daily wager, earning not more than Rs.400 in a good day. Our three out of seven children are out of school, thanks to poverty. To tell you the truth, I can't recall when I last time ate meat", said Zarina while tending the youngest child in her lap.

While receiving a 5 kg bag of sacrificial animals' meat, Zarina looked visibly overwhelmed and desperately wanted to say something but her voice got simply choked. "Tonight we would eat meat, may be after six long months! Poverty, exacerbated by various factors, has practically deprived us of all such "luxuries" in life. Thank you for not forgetting us on this very festive occasion", she said in hardy audible voice.

With the kind support of UK head office, the HAI-Pak distributed a huge quantity of meat among under privileged communities at Muzaffarabad and elsewhere this year as well which was thoroughly appreciated by all and sundry. The HAI-Pak believes that spreading smile on the face of have-nots alone can lead us to the promotion of an egalitarian culture in our country.