Sharing Christmas Happiness by Giving
Sharing Christmas Happiness by Giving

Happiness comes by giving to others. The Bible says: “God loves cheerful givers” (2 Corinthians 9:7). When we give cheerfully, we will experience true rejoicing. This year UMN’s Rupandehi team experienced the joy of giving in an unusual way.

The Rupandehi team collected NPR 18,550 from their own resources and bought school bags and stationery items for 55 children attending the Miss Bahul Olum Madrasain Kapilvastu district, where Muslim and Hindu children are studying together. Many of these children have never even had a school bag before!

Five yearsago, 14 people were killed in ethnic conflict between Madhesi and Pahadi people in this area. Many families were displaced or made homeless and children were orphaned. UMN has beenable to bring together both groups through a PEACE project. At the Miss BahulOlum Madrasa, Muslim, Hindu, Pahadi and Madhesi children are studying and growing together in a friendly environment. However, because this is a very poor district, children were sitting on the floor without desks, benches or cushions, and only some had a notebook and pencil.

For a long time, UMN has been encouraging partner organisations and communities to contribute towards community development work, but sometimes UMN staffare asked: “What have you contributed yourself?” This year, the Rupandehi team (and a couple of friends from Kathmandu) were an example of giving to encourage each one of us. As we distributed the gifts, we saw such happiness and smiles on the faces of those poor children. They were so excited. Coordinator of the Interfaith Network Committee, Mr Budhhi Ram Aryal, really appreciated our deed, and Mr Mohamad Mustapha, Chairperson of Madrasa Management Committee, was also thankful to the Rupandehi cluster team for this wonderful gift to the poor children of that community.

The idea of gift sharing was initiated by Ramesh Thing, a Rupandehi cluster staff member. He shared from the Bible that how God mobilises His people to help others.  Ramesh encouraged and challenged each team member to give from their own resources to help poor and needy people. That’s how all team members decided to contribute to the education of the children of the madrasa, instead of having dinner in a hotel or organising big celebration programme in the cluster for Christmas and the New Year.

Ramesh Thing
Rupandehi Cluster

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