A few nights ago (9th March) I watched Dawn TV’s show Newseye. The discussion subject was off the beaten political track but spot-on FEF’s heart – child malnutrition in Pakistan. The stats shared by participants were quite damning for a country which has 80 million children. It further drove home the point around the negative economic and social consequences of a do-nothing approach, reinforcing our resolve to fight this menace as best we can. Like the allegory of the little hummingbird fighting the forest fire with only a drop of water at a time in its beak, responded to other animals’ mocking questions with “I am doing the best I can” – we are glad that we can say the same, ’we are doing the best we can’. And the heartening part is that unlike the lonely hummingbird we are all together in this – you and I and all the friends of FEF.
So, we are here on ground in Orangi, where our School Meal Program (SMP) restarted on the 1st of February after the schools re-opened again and I realized that it has been an year now since we served our first meal to the children. It has been in fits and starts due to Covid but we persevered. I also recognize that in the larger scheme of things, we still have to go the proverbial 999 steps since we have taken the first step. We started by serving 260 children and now we have 283, and are looking at expanding our reach to another school in Orangi (preferably a publicly managed school). We have reached out to the Ministry of Education for this.
We continue to look at ways and means to improve our delivery of nutrition to the children in schools. I am emboldened by the active participation of people with expertise in the various streams of knowledge that come together to make this initiative meaningful and impactful. We keep getting referred to a friend of a friend or a relation of a friend who is more than willing to help out. We are grateful, as all this stacks up to make us better at what we have set out to do.
Ramadan, the month of blessings, is just around the corner; we pray that it brings good tidings for all our friends. We solicit a small share of your giving for the future of the youth that we vow to serve. We also thank our existing supporters. Without you, we wouldn’t have come this far.