Tech Central: When did you start Hope Movement?
Anum: HOPE Movement was initiated in 2011. I was in my Olevels back then. It all started from a small group of students for a very small project and now MashAllah it has spread all over Pakistan and overseas.
What was your biggest motivation behind it?
I was born in a well off family but then things took a turning point and my family had to go through severe financial crisis. Things got better after some time but that crucial period of my life just sinked in my subconscious mind. And that’s why I never missed an opportunity to join in any social welfare cause whether in school or university.
So like every year, after monsoon the villages surrounding River Ravi are sinked in flood water and at in 2011 the flood took many homes away with it.
At that time an organisation asked its volunteers (I was one of the volunteer) to distribute mosquito coils and kits to those families. But, when I went to the flood affected areas. I realised that although those kits were useful to families but they needed something more than that. They needed basic necessities like food and clothes to survive. I talked to a bunch of friends and with the help of our families and our pocket money we managed to arrange some food supplies for a few families.
It didn’t stop here. We then decided to collect for families and approached more people for the cause. We named it as H.O.P.E. (Help Our Pakistan Enliven) Movement.
Did you face any hurdles from your friends and family?
Whenever you plan to do something good something better for yourself you’ll face a lot of hurdles, especially when you’re a female.
Alhumdulilah I have a very supportive family. They’ve always encouraged me at everything I do. They gave me full autonomy to choose my professional career. And they’ve been very kind for my cause to serve humanity. Whenever I used to get short of funds I used to get upset with the thought of not being able to help out the family in need. Apart from financial contributions my parents used to build up my hope. They always told me to keep trying until I reach the planned target. They believed in me that I’ll be able to do it and with their prayers, I always did. They’ve never discriminated me on the basis of my gender. They’ve actually empowered me. I wouldn’t say the same for friends. I guess that pretty sums up the question. But, not to offend anyone, some have been there for HOPE throughout its journey. They’ve been together through thick & thin. And honestly, HOPE wouldn’t have succeeded without their countless efforts. To sum up, Allah has been very kind to me.
In which areas are you currently operating?
We are operating all over Pakistan now, Alhumdulilah. But, our head office is in Lahore, therefore, our most of the activities are based in Lahore and its outskirts. Apart from Pakistan, we are also working overseas in England, Australia, Canada, and Saudi Arabia.
What are the current campaigns that you are working on? How can one contribute to those?
In this blessed month of Ramadan, team HOPE is working really hard to gather the blessings in as many ways as possible. We are arranging 3-4 Iftar Dastarkhans everyday at different locations in all over Pakistan serving almost 1000 people everyday. This will continue throughout the month. InshAllah.
We will also be arranging iftar dastarkhan overseas in Saudi Arabia particularly in Makkah and Madina, in London, England, and in Toronto, Canada. Iftar per person costs Rs100-150 depending on the menu.
We are arranging 1000 Ration packs to distribute to white collar families in different districts of Pakistan and to martyred families of Jammu Kashmir. One Ration pack costs Rs 2000 and it is sufficient for an average family of 4-6 persons for a month.
We will also be distributing fruit baskets to orphans. One fruit basket costs Rs 500.
We have also taken an initiative to free a prisoner this Ramadan. We will be freeing innocent prisoners and then council them before reuniting them with their families.
We will also be helping out a couple of liver transplant and cancer patients. Cost for one patient’s treatment is Rs 6,500,000.
We have also launched campaigns for Sadqa-e-Jariah. We will be installing water coolers in different colonies and distributing Quran Majeed along with Food packs.
One can contribute by sending us their Zakat, sadqa and general charity, and by physically joining us and providing their volunteering services at our events. And of course, by morally supporting us and praying for us.
For contributions you can contact us on our Facebook page : Fb.com/HelpOurPakistanEnliven
Instagram Account : teamhopemovement
Or alternatively you can call/text at +923244246607.
What do you think is the primary cause of inequality in Pakistan?
Our basic education. Our institutions are divided for genders. And they are taught the same way. Girls are taught to stay at home and accept the oppressive behaviour. Boys are taught to be dominant over girls and such dominance sometimes leads to undesirable consequences. We as a society have to stop this. We have to encourage girls to go out alone at times of need and get their work done without looking out for a male’s help. Girls have to trust themselves. I’m not discouraging them to do their household work but they shouldn’t just bound themselves to it.
What one-line message would you live to give to the nation?
Support others in any way you can. It doesn’t have to be monetary, sometimes your kind words can have a great impact on someone’s life. And when you see someone going out of their way just to help out the society, encourage them and support them.