Neha
I don't believe in unreasonable charity. For those knocking on the car windows or ringing my doorbell, my purse is always empty and my ears never function. You might call it rude. But I have my reasons for doing so.

Once at a traffic signal, a gentleman came begging to buy a packet of incense sticks from him. He said that he hadn't eaten all day and had to buy food for his small children at home. As he was selling something, which is hard work, I bought two packets from him. On reaching home, I noticed the price sticker on the packs. The price he quoted was Rs 30, he gave me two packs for Rs 20 each and what was printed was Rs 10!

On another occasion, a ill looking boy, of about 10 years, came along begging. Saddened by his condition, I gave him some money. A few days later, I saw the same boy smoking under the flyover at the same signal.

Once this woman with an infant at a temple was begging for money to buy her child some milk. We were a group of friends who were passing by. She almost clung to my feet for money. I stopped and asked her why she didn't work as she looked fit enough. She snapped back, 'Why should I work when I earn so much by begging?'

Such instances killed whatever I ever felt for such people. Not that the sympathy was dead, but the instinct to help them was gone for ever.

Yet, there have been things I have done and willingly do. Not for those begging for alms at signals, but those who really want to do something for themselves. I never could really help with that kind of money though. I realized that I had time (weekends) and a little knowledge that I could contribute. And this is what I have been doing till now.

Those of you who have been following this space for quite some time would know that I have been associated with a couple of organizations working towards educating poor and needy children. One is a government orphanage where I spent weekends with children (how I got to doing it) and another Vidya and Child, an NGO.

And now, I am here to ask you for your help- a small contribution. Along with Give India, we are trying to raise funds for Vidya and Child.

This time, I am helping them with some fundraising. It doesn't require much. Even an amount of Rs 500 (around $9-10) that we willingly spend on movie tickets or a meal is an ample contribution.

Of course, I cannot force you to do this. This is just a request, rather an appeal. Can we not contribute a little of our hard-earned money that will go a long way in the betterment of a child?

For contributing towards this cause, please click on the below link:


Go to the make a donation section for donating. Before donating, you may have to register with Giveindia.org.

1200+ children of Vidya & Child are bubbling with dreams. They have the potential and capability to achieve their dreams.
What they need is your unconditional and continued support!

Please note: Indian tax payers will get an 80G certificate, US tax payers will get 501(c)3 receipt and UK donors will be able to GiftAid their donations to Vidya & Child. You will be able to donate after registering with GiveIndia. Please choose appropriate tax status (Indian / UK / US) while registering.

This is a small favour I am asking from all my blogdosts. Can we do this??
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Neha
Read Part 1, 2, 3 & 4

Like the previous time, home hunting was not an easy task this time around either. The days of the notice period were flying past and we were unable to find a suitable place.

Finally we were able to find something that was close to what we were looking for and, more importantly, fitted in our budget. The night before the final shifting, and also the last night of the notice period, was spent in packing scores of things we had accumulated over a few months.

The morning after, I was woken up by a call. It was from our property agent.

He said there was some problem. Unable to understand it over the telephone, we went to meet him. He took a while to explain that the new landlord wanted some time before deciding if they were willing to let out their apartment to us.

'But hadn't they agreed to it last week when we gave the token money?' I asked

'Well, yes, I had spoken to them. And the token money, that is still with me.' He seemed hesitant in his reply, or may be I anticipated it.

'So you mean to say that you took the token money from us without their approval?' I was ready to tear him apart.

'No, yes... wait, I will speak to them again and call you.'

I wanted to give him a piece of my mind but refrained. We returned. We had no option but to do that.

We sat for several hours on our packed luggage, waiting for his call. We even tried to call him repeatedly. To no avail.

It was past 5 pm when the new tenants of our existing apartment arrived. With their bags and baggage.

My roommate and I looked at each other in despair.

'I guess it's time to take all this to the railway station.' I said matter-of-factly pointing to the piles of our bags and suitcases. And in that moment of being on the brink of breaking down, we both burst out laughing.

So we requested the new tenants to give us some more time and waited for the phone call.

Finally, it came.

Yes, it did bring in good news. The new landlords had agreed that we were reliable enough to live in their apartment and they'd let it out to us.

There were much to be done before we could finally celebrate this news. I rushed to get a vehicle to help us move our stuff.

The next few hours went in negotiations, loading and unloading and a little bit of packing to give us a good night's sleep in our new place.

Once done, we walked to a nearby restaurant for a simple meal of South Indian food. We ate our dinner silently and as each morsel went into our mouth, it was not only our body, but our tired minds and soul that got nourishment.

Today when I am surrounded with problems, I look back to that evening when we sat on our piles of luggage. The evening when we were gripped by the fear of unknown. Nothing seemed to be in our hands. We were waiting all day for a phone call to tell us if we could stay in a place.

We did not know what we would do if that phone call never came, or worse, if we didn't get any accommodation then. We had not thought of it. Or let's say, we did not want to think about it.

And in that moment of despair, we still smiled and laughed. We still had the optimism, the hope and the faith. That little light still shone somewhere in our heart despite our helplessness at that time.

When faced with problems now, I remind myself of moments like those.

I tell myself if I could swim through those, the present ones are too small when compared. I remind myself of the hope we had then and how important it was to hold us together.

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About the series 'My Corporate Saga'
Blogdosts, through this series, I am attempting to share what I have learned in the past 8 years. I have broken down, then stood up, have trusted and have failed. It has been a bitter-sweet journey, which I am trying to bring to you all.

Will come back with more. Till then, take care and stay precious :)
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