Great charity by little ones

Kids on a mission

 23 Feb 2017 - 10:11

Kids on a mission

By Irfan Bukhari | The Peninsula

The act of kindness of two little school kids in Qatar takes the word ‘charity’ to greater heights and it belittles many words and phrases usually employed to appreciate any good move. 

Two little kids from the Doha English Speaking School are selling their lovely collections of gifts to spread light into the lives of millions who suffer from various eye diseases. They chose  ‘Orbis and Qatar Charity joint fund raising campaign’ to kick off their charity venture. 

Not only this, the determined kids prepare homemade drinks and cakes for sale in order to raise money to help the needy. 

Imogen and Rory decided to sell their wares, banana muffins, cookies and homemade lemonade in their neighbourhood to raise funds for the initiative which is the chosen initiative of Doha English Speaking School for 2017.

Rory said: “We sold our cupcakes and lemonade to help people who can’t see.” Imogen said: “We got a lots of pocket money and I wanted to help others.”  Going by the words of Edith Wharton, “There are two ways of spreading light; to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it”, the enterprising-initiative of these two kids is both a candle and mirror for those people who have not yet loosened strings of their purses for charity works. 

Imogen and Rory also planned a price list and a marketing plan which involved making signs, sending messages to neighbours and also went to the extent of using the old method “word of mouth”.  

“The sale was a great success, all the items were sold out within one hour.  We are very grateful to our generous neighbours who extended their helping hands for making it a reality,” Rory added. 

The Headteacher of the school, Sean Sibley, expressed his happiness over the initiative. “It is always so refreshing when children show such an initiative and work hard for such a good cause.  Both children worked very hard to raise money towards Orbis and Qatar Charity and I know the NGOs involved really appreciate their hard work.  We all thank Imogen and Rory for their thoughtfulness and hard work.”  

Florence Branchu, Head of Partnerships for the Qatar Creating Vision initiative said: “Visual impairment may prevent a person or a child from reaching their full potential or a full life within their community, which can lead to a cycle of poverty. We want to break this cycle by providing access to eye care and give people back their independence.  

The ‘Orbis and Qatar Charity joint fundraising campaign’ aligns with the Qatar Creating Vision initiative, supported by the Qatar Fund for Development, which will provide 5.5 million eye screenings and treatments to children in India and Bangladesh by 2020.”

“It is truly inspiring to witness young pupils like Imogen and Rory play their part in our fight against blindness and we are proud to be Doha English Speaking School’s chosen initiative!”

In 2015 Qatar Charity and Orbis launched a campaign to raise more than QR4m to reduce blindness in children in Bangladesh. The campaign was launched after Her Royal Highness Princess Sophie, the Countess of Wessex paid a visit to Qatar Charity headquarters in Doha in October 2015.

Under this partnership, Qatar Charity has been mobilising support for the campaign, while Orbis is implementing it, by virtue of its more than 15 years of preventing blindness experience in Bangladesh.
Head of the Middle East Partnerships at Orbis Florence Branchu told The Peninsula:”Our partnership with Qatar Charity is helping us to collect urgent donations that can help to transform the lives of children living in Bangladesh.” 

She said that there were 7.4 million people in Bangladesh who were blind or visually impaired.

“Cataract is the most common cause of blindness there and around 5,000 children are diagnosed each year. While cataract is easily treated with surgery, rural areas of Bangladesh are hard to reach and communities can find it extremely hard to access the right treatment.

The place where you live affects  the accessibility of treatment. With 75% of Bangladesh’s population residing in rural areas, a simple trip to the optometrist can become an almost impossible feat. Sometimes your local clinic could be several hundred kilometres away and the cost of travelling there could be too expensive. And this really can be a matter of life and death. Sixty Percent of blind children will die within their childhood, so bringing treatment options closer to home is vital,” she observed. 

Anyone can support the campaign by texting ‘El Ein’ (the eye) to: 92133 to donate QR25. QR25 could contribute to equipment cost for a cataract surgery; 92632 to donate QR50 – QR50 could help to organise outreach camps in the remote areas to identify and refer more children for treatment; 92642 to donate QR100. QR100 could cover examination kit of primary eye care workers who can promote eye care and raise awareness.