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HDF: Stand With Those Who Build Schools : ALL THINGS PAKISTAN
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HDF: Stand With Those Who Build Schools

Posted on January 28, 2009
Filed Under >Adil Najam, Education, Society
Total Views: 81093


Adil Najam

A friend who is very active in the Human Development Foundation (HDF) asked me to carry the fund-raising appeal that we have carried in our side-columns for nearly a month. Although these funds are not being raised directly by ATP, I do believe that this is a good cause and would urge those who can to please contribute, in whatever amount you can.

This was not my intent when we first used this widget, and it certainly was not HDF’s, but events in this last month have highlighted just how important schools and education is. Let us all stand with those who build schools, and against those who destroy them.

There are those who are shaken by the constant focus we have kept over the last few days on what the Taliban elements are doing in Swat to schools, and in killing Pakistanis and Muslims. As proud Pakistanis, we must stand vigilant and speak out against that which brings disrepute to and threatens our country, just as we take joy in that which brings us pride.

The bad news is that this is really bad news and very seriously bad news and it is now consistent and constant. We highlight it because the majority of Pakistan is not like this and because we all must make sure that the majority of Pakistan never becomes like this. The good news is that there are far more people and institutions in Pakistan building education and schools (just a few examples covered in ATP here, here, here, here) than there are destroying schools. Let us all please make sure that it always remains so. In fact, we must make sure that no schools are destroyed ever, anywhere.

To learn more about HDF, please see this wonderful PBS documentary. Note, especially, the introductory lines. Makes you think about what a few good (or bad) deeds can do to how the world views you:

So, to repeat myself, I believe this is a good cause and would urge those who can to please contribute. Obviously there is no dearth of good causes, and I would urge you to contribute and help any and all of them. If not the HDF, help out any other group that you know better and is doing good work, especially in education. But, please, do whatever you can for the education of Pakistan’s young. For the sake of all our futures.

P.S. I actaully know that many of our readers are major contributors to the HDF and to many many other good causes, but also that giving over the internet is a new a mysterious enterprise to some. However, having studied philanthropy, especially by Pakistanis, I also know that the habit of giving, even in small amounts, makes a huge positive difference to causes as well as to those giving themselves.

32 comments posted

Comment Pages: [4] 3 2 1 » Show All

  1. SJH says:
    February 1st, 2009 4:00 pm

    To Aik Pakistani,
    One can certainly go to HDF’s website at http://www.hdf.com and donate online via credit card. Thanks for asking for that clarification.

  2. Aik Pakistani says:
    February 1st, 2009 2:48 pm

    Thanks bonobashi! Interestingly, I was actually inclined to just use the word ‘Bapu’ but thanks for the correction :).

    Actually I myself just recently became aware of HDF and all the good work they’re doing in Pakistan. Looking at their website it looks like one can also donate using a credit card.

    Maybe someone from HDF can shed some more light on this, please?

  3. bonobashi says:
    January 31st, 2009 8:39 pm

    @Aik Pakistani

    Sorry to interrupt, and not to distract from your message, which is important, indeed vital.

    The name is more usually rendered ‘Gandhi’, except by Anglo-Americans who don’t understand the joys of a soft ‘d’, leave alone the pleasures of a soft ‘dh’.

    On a more serious note, and in partial response to your comment, is it possible for HDF or its friends to accept contributions abroad, outside Pakistan, and of a normal, cheque or cash contribution kind?

  4. Waheed says:
    January 31st, 2009 1:19 pm

    I am actually quite impressed by this effort. For a blog, where many maybe most visitors are students to raise this much in really a couple of days is quite impressive. More than that it is the spirit in the comments and post that is impressive.

  5. Aik Pakistani says:
    January 31st, 2009 9:28 am

    I can’t resist sharing that I’m a little disappointed. We have to push hard if we really want to see some conducive results. Almost 4,000 views, 28 comments and only 19 contributors? I agree it’s not a competition or race but if we want our nation to eventually win this marathon, we’ll have to push a little harder.

    “We must be the change we wish to see in the world”. Mahatma Ghandi

  6. Kamran says:
    January 31st, 2009 2:37 am

    It is important that ATP highlight these kind of charity fund activities, as through these we can actually contribute to Pakistan.

    Supporting words are always welcome, but actually ‘doing’ something is extremely important. We come here and comment to let off our steam, but that does not help anyone. However, having posts like these where we can actually contribute in someway will directly impact the lives of our people.


  7. Riaz Haq says:
    January 31st, 2009 12:46 am

    While the problems faced by Pakistan are huge, I believe that a serious and organized initiative by a tiny percentage of Pakistan’s large middle class of at least 40-50m people, including Pakistani diaspora, can begin to make a difference. Organizations such as HDF are an important of this effort. Pakistanis owe it to themselves and their poor brethren to step up and take responsibility for improving the situation of the most vulnerable citizens of their country. The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. But we must persevere by taking one step after another until we see results.

    To read more, please visit:

  8. Student Biryani says:
    January 30th, 2009 2:49 pm

    I have never heard of HDFs work before this but am glad that I know of them now and an endorsement from someone like Prof. Najam counts for a lot for me. I salute anyone working for Pakistan and there is no greater service that we can do than building schools.

    I am unable to use PayPal from here, but my support and prayers are with you. I hope that we can at least cross the $1000 mark in our collection. Good luck.

Comment Pages: [4] 3 2 1 » Show All

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