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    Volume 6 | Issue 15 | April 16, 2012 |


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Youth In Action

A Cry for Help

Salman Rob
Photos: Saymon Hossain Khan

"In the present circumstances, no one can afford to assume that someone else will solve their problems. Every individual has a responsibility to help guide our global family in the right direction. Good wishes are not sufficient; we must become actively engaged."-- His Holiness, the Dalai Lama.

That is how the volunteers from Jaago Foundation have taken the initiative to provide for the people in the Karail slum whose homes were destroyed last week. Thousands of people have become homeless. To make sure that the homeless are getting food, a group of student-volunteers from Jaago Foundation has lent a hand to help since April 6, 2012, providing lunch everyday for a week. The volunteers also included students from Bangladesh Medical College (BMC), for emergency medical assistance, not to mention medical support from Renata Limited.

Saymon Hossain Khan, a graduate student from National University and a regular volunteer of Jaago Foundation shares his experience. He says, “I have been coming here from the very first day and so far, nothing has been able to keep me away from these people. The thought of thousands of people starving is something I am not ready to accept, especially when I have already seen them.” Speaking of how to fund such a big event, Khan mentions, “There is no way of getting hold of so much funding at a time. We have started, so anyone who is interested to contribute can come forward."

Talking to few of the homeless people, they mentioned how hard it will get once the volunteers leave. They say that it would be difficult to start their lives once the young volunteers leave, since it already is an issue finding a new home in the capital, for these homeless people.

Faiaz Halim, a student from Ideal School and College and a young volunteer of Jaago says, “After finishing my classes in school I directly came over here to help. We can only provide the homeless people here with lunch and sometimes dinner if we have enough funding. I think we are going strong till now, providing lunch for an average of five thousand people per day. For lunch on the first three days, we gave 'khichuri', plain rice, vegetables and beef curry alternatively." Speaking of struggle, Halim mentions, “There were people who did not like what we were doing and wanted us to stop, but we held our nerves and pulled it through, making sure to stay on for a few more days.”

The slum also had to go through other difficulties, like, a little child dying and a few pregnant mothers having to deliver their children, all the while knowing that they did not have a home. A call for help is all that the volunteers and the foundation are trying to get for these people. Korvi Rakshand, Founder of Jaago Foundation, says, “I have been getting a lot of calls from different organisations from national and international contacts. They all want to help. And we are going to keep providing for these people for as long as possible but the government, at some point, has to do something for them. There are a lot of people who are now jobless; with their families not having a home. They have no other option but to just wonder where they will go and what will happen to them.”

Some of these people have no roof above their heads; they get drenched in the rain at night, shiver and wait for the sun to come up so that they can get dry again. How long can they keep up with this? It is time to join hands and answer to their cry for help.


Cynthia Cooper-Dyke


Born in Chicago, Illinois, former American and WNBA Basketball Player and Head Coach of UNC Wilmington Seahawks, Cynthia Cooper-Dyke was born on the 15 April and grew up in South Central Los Angeles, California. Cooper is the daughter of Mary and Kenny Cooper. She attended Locke High School before enrolling at the University of Southern California. Cooper participated athletically in both track and field as well as basketball. She led her team to the California State Championship scoring an average of 31 points per game, and scoring 45 points in one game. Cooper was named the Los Angeles Player of the Year. She was a four-year letter winner at guard for USC from 1982 to1986. She led the Women of Troy to NCAA appearances in all four years, Final Four appearances in three of her four years, and back-to-back NCAA tournament titles in 1983 and 1984. After the 1984 Championship, she briefly left school, but was persuaded to return. She completed fours years with USC, although she did not graduate. Cooper closed out her collegiate career with an appearance in the 1986 NCAA tournament championship game and a spot on the NCAA Final Four All-Tournament Team. Cooper ranks eighth on USC's all-time scoring list with 1,559 points, fifth in assists and third in steals. While Cooper was at USC, the Women of Troy compiled a record of 11415. Cooper played for USA Basketball as part of the 1987 USA Women's Pan American Team which won a gold medal in Indianapolis, Indiana. Cooper was a member of the gold medalist 1988 US Olympic Women's Basketball Team and the Bronze Medal team in 1992.

Information Source: Internet

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