By United Kingdom News Group (Originally in English)
Following Supreme Master Ching Hai’s loving advice to help those who are disadvantaged, especially during the colder months, in January of 2016, our United Kingdom Association members traveled to Leicester and London to assist those in need. Two of our Association members also went to London on March 17, 2016, to provide needed supplies to individuals who are homeless.
Leicester – January 16, 2016
After learning from the news that a couple had to spend their Christmas in a dumpster because they had lost their jobs and home, our Association members in Leicester visited them on January 16, giving them GBP 200 together with some delicious vegan foods including vegan cheeses, veggie meat, crackers, chocolate and organic fruit. In addition, we also shared Master’s books The Key of Immediate Enlightenment Sample Booklet and From Crisis to Peace – The Organic Vegan Way Is the Answer. The couple said they felt very lucky for having received these loving gifts. Thankfully, with the help of other kind individuals, they are currently staying temporarily in a hotel while waiting for a housing arrangement by the Leicester City Council.
London – January 20 and 27, 2016
On January 20, one of our Association members from Surrey Center went to London to distribute daily necessities to those less fortunate. On Oxford Street, she gave three pairs of winter socks, a four-season sleeping bag and water to a young woman who has been homeless since July of last year. As a token of love from Master, she also handed out GBP 60, a copy of the Alternative Living flyer and a copy of Master’s The Key of Immediate Enlightenment Sample Booklet. Worrying that the woman may be hungry, she quickly went to a nearby shop and bought her a vegan pizza and hot tea. The woman happily thanked her.
At Leicester Square, she met Nicola, a young woman from Scotland who had been on the street for several weeks. She gave Nicola some winter socks, a pack of antibacterial wipes, bottled water, bananas, a hot vegan meal and GBP 20, which were gratefully accepted. Nicola said she is actively looking for a job, remaining positive despite having to go through this difficult situation.
On the evening of January 27, three of our Surrey Association members met up in London, carrying various supplies ready to be distributed to homeless individuals. We walked around in the city and met many interesting people who are living on the streets for different reasons. We were honored to hear their stories.
There was 21-year-old Donna, who could not afford a flat deposit in order to register an address for a job application. There was Paul, who had nowhere to go after the farm he used to work on was closed. Ion, from Moldova, has degrees in law and foreign languages, and wants to apply for a job to support his family back home. Another young man left his family who was involved in drug dealing and had no support from anyone. We bought some warm vegan food and drinks for each of them, and soon they were sharing their food with their friends. Our team plans to meet again and continue to assist those in need.
London – March 17, 2016
On the evening of March 17, two of our Association members from the United Kingdom went to central London to give out needed supplies to those who were homeless. In an area where approximately 100 people were gathered, we soon distributed all of the prepared supplies which included thermal wear, socks and undergarments, as well as daily necessities like hand sanitizer, face wipes, hand cream etc. Four sleeping bags were also given to grateful recipients. Two women expressed much appreciation when receiving warm winter coats and feminine hygiene products.
When it became clear that the supplies we prepared were not enough for everyone, we went to purchase more. We also bought soy hot chocolates and mochas for distribution.
We came across a Romanian man named Francisco who appeared to be very shy and humble, and invited him to dinner. From our conversation, we found that he was a highly intelligent and deeply spiritual person who had sadly fallen into an insecure situation due to difficult times in his life. We gave him a copy of The Key of Immediate Enlightenment Sample Booklet, as he was interested in Master’s teachings and wanted to come to our London Center to meditate and learn more. We decided to stay in touch with him and help him get a job. He was very appreciative of the gifts and the chance to talk with us about spiritual matters.
The day after we met Franciso, he found a job distributing newspapers that would enable him to open a bank account, and as a result, would enable him to find a more secure job, which we offered to assist in helping him find.
Our deep gratitude to Master for giving us the opportunity to serve others and to share Her love. May all our friends who are homeless soon find permanent shelter filled with warmth and happiness.
Expenditures by The Supreme Master Ching Hai International Association for Winter Relief Work in the United Kingdom
|Supplies (a sleeping bag, wipes, socks) and food (bananas, water, vegan pizza, bread roll, hot tea and pita bread with vegan falafel)||69.39||B|
|Clothing (thermal wear, socks, undergarments and winter coats), other supplies (hand sanitizer, face wipes, hand cream, women’s necessities and sleeping bags) and drinks (soy hot chocolates and mochas)||221.06||C|
|Total|| GBP 570.45