I have always read about the generous philanthropic nature of Pakistanis in general and specially from the ones who leave the country but still tend to give back, as soon as they have the means.
My first such experience was during the disastrous earthquake of 2005 in the northern area of Pakistan, when I saw hundreds of thousands of people from Karachi flocked in the PAF Museum, to donate and provide volunteer help to sort the goods and help in loading on the trucks, planes, helicopters borne for the relief areas. The area as big as a park, was fully covered with clothings, food items, clean water bottles, utensils, etc. That was phenomenal, especially looking at the fact, that people in Karachi have to face high inflation and many already face difficulty to make both ends meet, yet everyone was sharing wholeheartedly, at the time of need, in whatsoever way, they can, to support 3.5million people who were displaced during that earthquake.
Recently, I had another first-hand experience, where I simply posted on my facebook status, that a group of 4 friends have setup a simple food subsidy program, to feed the poor living right besides their neighbourhoods in Karachi, in the ‘jhughyain’. Friends flocked in messaging me on FB, saying they want to contribute and many of them from outside pakistan, asking how to send money. It was overwhelming to notice, how most of the pakistanis feel about others in need. Accordingly to an old article by Khadeeja Balkhi in the DAWN news, in 2000, Pakistanis gave $1.2 billion, or Rs 67.7 billion, in charity. Pakistan is ranked the sixth most philanthropic country in the world, according to the Pakistan Centre for Philanthropy (PCP). The PCP’s pioneering study in 1998 showed that total giving by individuals was equivalent to 17 per cent of the year’s national revenue.
Apart from the element of religion, which says to gives alms in the form of ‘Zakat‘ (obligatory) and charity in the form of ‘Sadqa’ (volunteer act), Pakistani has a generous heart, because they know government does not fulfil it’s responsibility effectively, leaving many at the helm of capitalist system, where nothing moves without money. That makes it even more important for individuals to help the have-nots themselves. Many of the people also have gone through that time of struggle and misery and then God blessed them with the means and resource for a prosperous life, so they tends not to forget that time and naturally show kindness to the poor. We have so many big names, like Abdul Sattar Edhi, Hakim Saeed, Ansar Burney, Agha Hasan Abedi, Nadirshaw Edulji Dinshaw (NED), etc. and so many organizations like TCF, Alamghir Welfare Trust, Fatmid Foundation, and so many others.
Indeed, Pakistanis carry a generous heart, for helping their fellow beings.
The best charity is to satisfy a hungry person”.
“No wealth (of a muslim) is decreased because of charity.”.
“Anyone who has property that exceed his needs, let him support someone whose property does not (meet his or her needs), and anyone whose food exceeds his needs, let him share it with someone who does not have food.“.
“None of you truly believes until he wishes for his brother what he wishes for himself.”
——— Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)
“Service to others is the rent you pay here for your room on earth.”
——— Muhammad Ali
“Think as little as possible about yourself and as much as possible about other people.”
——— Eleanor Roosevelt