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2nd Annual Haridwar Giving Event

November - 2023 - Haridwar

Come join us in Haridwar as we give away 300 stuffed Ganapati!

Ganesa, Ganapati, Gajavaktra; whatever name you know, Ganapati is in your heart. You know he is the remover of all obstacles, the granter of all success, and the first we call while praying. We know of his sacrifice, love for his mother, and never-ending commitment to his duty. 

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We began driving a taxi for a large service using our tools: a valid US driver's license and a working vehicle. In one weekend, we were able to bring in $600 worth of "donations." And sure, we may have been the ones donating our time and fuel expenses, but we finally met our needed goal.

Just 20 days ago, we celebrated the birth of Ganapati. And today, we are receiving the first photos of the birth of the Ganapati we can provide to the children. 

But these children live in holes under sidewalks, in tents, and sleep on the streets. Some of them are even sleeping alone. However, they still were full of joy. Their smiling faces echo through my mind, and I remember a boy fishing for coconuts that travelers throw in the river as tribute. I remember seeing some children repairing a broken kite they found. And they smiled and laughed and had a great day. There were no tears shed over electronic items; no social media, just kids playing. 

It's normal to face obstacles in life; I encountered several this week. I'm sure you have also met several roadblocks, and we all handle these differently. But I yelled at my computer screen and cried; every day this week, I have had tears falling out of my eyes. I asked 50 friends for $1, one single dollar. Only seven friends donated. I cried tears of defeat as I watched the bank account sit low. 

But these children are the reason that I am doing this work. I didn't see them crying about iPhone chargers or parking spaces for their air-conditioned vehicle. I didn't see them crying that the kite broke; I saw them get up and fix it. 

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Ganapti is the inspiration of my heart's work. When I first traveled to Haridwar, the children I met had the most courageous spirit of love and happiness. I was so worried about my iPhone battery that I carried an external battery to charge my devices. I was "worried" about my electronic items, to the point that I had to put thought into this worry and spend $30 more to keep these devices going. 

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Our goal was to provide 300 stuffed animals to the children. We took a leap of faith and contracted with a company we had never met. We wired over $500 to them in hopes that it would be a company that could produce a good product for these children. And we were pleasantly pleased. Divya Soft Toys, owned and operated by Priyanka Nishad, will forever be our choice for toy production. Together with her team of highly skilled individuals, they are handcrafting every single one of these with love and devotion. 

Through the distribution of 300 stuffed Ganapati toys, along with books in Hindi, coloring books, crayons, kites, and chocolate, we were able to bring joy and comfort to children who rarely have the opportunity to enjoy toys of their own. We were deeply moved by the response of the local community and were honored to have the opportunity to serve them. By spreading the message of faith and hope, we hope to inspire the children to overcome their obstacles and live a life full of purpose and meaning.

We are so grateful to be a part of this beautiful project. The person with the idea in their heart is only the person with the idea in their heart. The people that put the work together, make the phone calls, and build the toys; are the heroes.

We invite you to not only watch this journey but to join us. Join us by donating your time, efforts, and resources. Together we can make the Annual Haridwar Giving Event better than ever.

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we made a coloring book!
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