By Formosa Relief Team (Originally in Chinese)
In December 2012, concerned about the plight of the homeless and of spiritual practitioners in Pakistan in winter, Supreme Master Ching Hai contributed US$25,000 and asked our Association members to please go provide warmth to those in need.
Our team from Formosa’s Taipei Center quickly responded. We arrived at the Pakistani capital of Islamabad on December 14 with US$4,740 contributed by our Association members for this relief work together with Master’s generous contribution. After discussing matters with our local Association members and Red Crescent Societies, we purchased sufficient blankets to meet local needs, planning to distribute these first in Sindh Province in the south, before proceeding north to the Pakistan-administered Azad Kashmir with the hope that our permit application for Azad Kashmir (located in the military control zone) might be approved by that time.
In Karachi, the largest metropolitan city of Pakistan, we purchased 570 blankets. We distributed them to people in need in Razzakabad on December 19 and then in Nawabshah on December 20. The following day, we gave out a total of 454 blankets to homeless children, many of them orphans. All were very happy to receive these precious supplies. In the afternoon, we distributed an additional 10 blankets to a group of Sufi spiritual practitioners in a small village.
With infinite blessing and love from Master, the permits to enter Azad Kashmir were granted within a few days. On returning to Islamabad, our team bought 688 blankets and arranged trucks to transport them to Azad Kashmir on December 22. The next day, in Muzaffarabad, the capital of Azad Kashmir, we were joined by three volunteers – Mr. Imran and two other locals. We were very happy to find out that all three follow a plant-based diet. Together we traveled to the Bheri high mountain area where we gave out 210 blankets to disadvantaged people in three villages. On December 24, we went to the Pir-Chinasi high mountain tribe, and distributed 388 blankets to villagers.
On December 25, with the help of our volunteer friend, Mr. Imran, our team distributed 45 blankets in temples frequented by spiritual practitioners and homeless people. Fortunately the mountain pass remained snow free for the three days from December 22 to 25. On returning to Islamabad on December 26, we distributed 45 more blankets to homeless individuals. Our team members were very grateful for Master’s boundless blessings, which enabled us to overcome various challenges to complete this relief work smoothly.
Expenditures by Supreme Master Ching Hai and Her International Association
for Cold Weather Relief Work in Pakistan
|Blankets||US$29,740||A, B, C|
Throughout the relief operation, the team members paid US $14,105 for their own transportation, food and accommodations.