As Eid approaches, groups of young volunteers are gearing up to reach out to children of the twin cities’ underprivileged communities.
While some are extending monetary contributions, others are offering thoughtful presents to make the occasion memorable for children of a lesser god. An Islamabad-based group of volunteers have engaged a network of their families and friends to collect toys and pencils for children in women’s barracks at Adiala Jail. The barracks house convicted and under-trial prisoners, some of whom have children living with them. Some of these children were born in prison.
According to official sources, there are 45 children, from newborns, up to the age of 12. The group is planning to cater to around 50 children through the toy drive. The volunteers are collecting new or unused toys which are in good condition. While keeping in line with the prison regulations, no toys with sharp edges are allowed.
Unwrapped stuffed toys and colouring books with pencils and crayons are preferred. The toys will be hand-delivered before Eid. Drop-off points are at Kuch Khaas, House 1, Street 1, F-6/3, Islamabad and Maroof Dental Clinic, Maroof Hospital, F-10 Markaz, Islamabad from 10am to 5pm. The deadline for contributions is July 31.
Ramazan Toy Drive, a volunteer-based group that was initiated in Lahore a few years back, has branched out to Islamabad. They are collecting toys, play dough, coloured pencils and colouring books, board games, biscuits, bite-sized candies, stuffed toys, dolls and puzzles. The deadline for contributions is July 26. To get more information, contact the relevant person on 0321 244 8775.
Similarly, The Global Shapers Community has organised a drive for the schoolchildren of Pehli Kiran School Number 7 (PK-7) under its Global Hub Islamabad initiative. The community is a network of young individuals driven to doing community work. They are accepting donations to procure Eidi items for the schoolchildren and their families at PK-7, near FAST University, Islamabad on August 3. For donations, contact the relevant person on 0301 8690012.
Meanwhile, The Citizens Foundation (TCF) has collaborated with Liberty Books and The Express Tribune for an initiative to collect and donate old books for underprivileged children. Paperbacks and hard covers of school books and children’s novels can be donated at the foundation’s regional office, Gangal West, Service Road, near Fazaia Colony, Islamabad Highway.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 26th, 2013.