By Adeeb Chowdhury
At this very moment, hundreds of millions of young souls across the globe are withering and wailing in despair, finding no solace, no comfort, and no guardians to oversee them. Countless underprivileged orphans abandoned and exploited, lead a life of solitude and helplessness, no one to guide them. For them, food is scarce and any shelter is only temporary. Street children without a home or any caretakers are subjected to abuse on a regular basis. Exploitive, perverse crooks only wait for young, innocent, hungry children to stumble into their trap so they can be taken advantage of. Deprived of love, affection, and basic resources for survival, they find themselves unable to seek hope for a better tomorrow.
Providing a “better tomorrow” for helpless and underprivileged orphans across the world is the aim of the innovative and heartwarming “World Orphan Day 2017.” Organized by the renowned World Orphan Center (WOC), this day motivates citizens to help the orphaned children suffering from poverty and maltreatment. On the morning of April 20, numerous participants, volunteers, speakers, and orphans gathered cordially at Anika Community Center, Chittagong, to join in the promotion of this glorious and inspiring message. In a nutshell, World Orphan Day can be described as a day for charity and beginning of better job for society.
A wonderful and energizing rally took place, as a vigorous crowd of participants of World Orphan Day took to the streets. An enormous and attention-grabbing banner bearing the name of the event and the message of “Our Kids, Our Future” was placed at the forefront, as the crowd took strides across the city. One clear, bold message was proclaimed that day: we will not ignore the abuse of orphans across the world. The rally spread the message of hope and encouragement to promote the rights and well-being of underprivileged children.
WOC awarded five extraordinary figures and families for their immense contribution to making a better tomorrow for orphans. The first is Col. Abu Naser Md. Toha, principal of Chittagong Cantonment Public College-CCPC for his outstanding support for orphan students at his institution. Mr. Toha has developed a fund for orphan students who are supposed to leave school after their father’s death. Now, CCPC has developed a special fund for students who have lost their parents. He treated the audience to a riveting speech in which he touched upon the importance and necessity of taking care of orphaned needy children
The second recipient is the parents of “Ekush baby.” Dr. Zakirul Islam and Shakila Akter Noor adopted the baby whose parents left him in a dustbin on 21st February. The third recipient is Saiful Hakim, a renowned youth leader, for his great work for orphans.
The fourth recipient is A J M Nasir Uddin, Mayor of Chittagong City Corporation, for his outstanding kind support for orphans and underprivileged children.The fifth is the Barrister Tarekul Akber Khandoker, a youth leader and founder of Youth Voice of Bangladeshi, for his contribution to the development of youths.
At the discussion session, A J M Nasir Uddin, Honorable Mayor of Chittagong City Corporation, was the chief guest. He said, “The initiative taken by WOC should be supported by from every corner of the world so that orphans will be benefited highly to develop their life and career.”
He also said, “I am the father of orphans and will take care of them with all the means I have.”
He appreciated WOC activities from his heart and welcome all kinds of support from him.
Lion Mostaque Hossain, Immediate past lion Governor of Lions Clubs International, District 315-B4, Bangladesh was present as a special guest and appreciated WOC Founder’s Dream making project for Orphans at the program.
He said, “If we can spread the light of education among underprivileged children, it will make their career and life better.”
Colonel Abu Naser Md. Toha also addressed at the program where he described his vivid decision about creating a fund for orphans at his institution for what he got the prize of RQ Move inaugurated by WOC this year.
Other motivational speeches brightened the event. Salma Huq, an environmental activist, and a young woman entrepreneur, delivered a wonderful tribute to the importance of mobilizing the youth to help children who are suffering. Ln Md Mostaque Hossain, a distinguished social worker, and trainer, also graced the event with his presence. SM Khaledur Rahman, a blind Bangladeshi police officer, charmed the audience by relaying his brilliant story of overcoming his struggles and achieving success. Some youth participants, Fatema Botul and Adeeb Chowdhury, also gave speeches elaborating upon the message and meaning of World Orphan Day.
Mohammad Aman Ullah, the founder of WOC and conductor of the event, dazzled all those present with a heartfelt tribute to the significance of his work. “All the wealth of this beautiful world will be meaningless if any child dies because of hunger,” he proclaimed vividly. He and his team have been advocating for World Orphan Day to be recognized by the United Nations (UN) as an official special day, and will hopefully soon succeed. “We inspire local organizations and individuals to come forward and help the orphans. The orphans are a particularly vulnerable group, and they need our support, which means both individual and state initiatives are needed to reduce the risks and vulnerabilities that they are exposed to,” he added.
Soborno Isaac Bari, the brilliant child prodigy known as “Little Einstein”, served as the Goodwill Ambassador of World Orphan Day. In a letter to Mr. Aman Ullah, the young but incredible Soborno articulately described his faith that “we can create homes for the homeless, and love the orphans, and one day—we shall overcome. This faith can give us the courage to face uncertainties of the future. It will give our tired feet new strength as we continue our forward stride towards a city of hope where all orphans can dream to become the next Sir Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein.”
Keep in mind World Orphan Day’s apt and wonderful slogan—“Our Kids, Our Future.” This slogan reflects the reality that when we are helping young orphaned kids succeed, we are also helping our nation and our world make progress. We are giving young children an opportunity to shine, and a platform for success in the real world. This platform, if utilized properly, will help establish a better tomorrow for us all. And, for that reason, we shall think of abused orphan kids as our very own kids—for they will be among the next generation of citizens brightening our world.
A very active volunteer team of WOC’s Volunteers wing called Awesome Volunteers (AV) and Young Awesome Volunteers (YAV) managed every activity of this program from feeding to hospitality.
This year WOC tried to reach about 180 countries to observe World Orphans Day. 14 visionary features marked WOC’s approach. These are:
- Delicious food
- Educational materials
- Assurance of legal support
- Tips for life and health skills
- Inspiring speeches
- Spending quality time and selfie
- Apprenticeship materials to make them skilled
- Coding for orphans
- Language development program
- Take care of orphan centers/ orphanages/ shelter houses
- Encouraging sponsors to focus on underprivileged children
- Will encourage adoption
WOC is now Planning for a big project called “Coding For Kids” as an apprenticeship for orphans and underprivileged kids.
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