In October 2013, an Executive of a Company had a moving experience, when OBLF requested his Company to put up a Wish Tree so that the employees could donate to fulfill a wish of each rural child in our Program. Since then, this Executive has organized this event and enthused others each year. This year when I called to thank him, he told me why he was so motivated. In 2013, one of the kid’s wish was to get “a piece of cake”. He suddenly looked at life with a different perspective. He was so moved by this simple wish – which we so take for granted – that he not only used it as a source of motivation, but stopped the practice – in his company, as well as his personal life – of getting a spare cake during any celebration, just to smear on each other’s faces for fun!
He experienced the Joy of Giving!
This quarter saw us continuing with our Program, but was interspersed by many festivals. This period is a period of celebration in our country and of people exchanging gifts and having parties.
However, for the under-privileged, there is not much to celebrate. Thus was born, a few years back, the “Joy of Giving Week”, which is now called “Daan Utsav”, to have a more inclusive effect. The week starts very appropriately, from the birth date of Mahatma Gandhi on 2nd October.
This very informal utsav encourages every Indian to “give” – believing in the philosophy that no matter how poor or underprivileged, each of us has something unique which we can part with, to bring joy into another person’s life.
We at OBLF, use this opportunity to give toys to each child in our program. We see that almost all of the time, donors generously give for the education that we provide. But we feel that kids need to experience the sheer joy of getting something which is not always connected to education. And the unadulterated pleasures we see on their faces justify our belief.
We are of course extremely grateful to the employees of many corporates who put up Wish Trees for our kids and donate so generously to this cause.